Living adjacent to a transmission line - Fingrid

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Living adjacent to a transmission line - Fingrid

Let’s stay on good termsAn electricity transmission line is a neighbourwhich does not wish to disturb others or be disturbed.This brochure contains information andsafety instructions, which make living adjacent toa transmission line safe and trouble-free.FINGRID HAS A RIGHT TO USE THE LINE AREASFingrid does not own the land areas under thetransmission lines or the trees located withinthese areas. These are property of the landowner.Through expropriation, Fingrid has acquired apermanent right to use the transmission line area.This gives the company a right to for example usethe transmission line area, restrict building in thearea, clear vegetation in the area, and manageexcessively tall trees in the border zone.The company’s right and obligation to give theinstructions presented in this brochure is basedon the Electrical Safety Act and on the expropriationof the transmission line area on the basis of apermit given by the Council of State.COMPENSATION PAID TO LANDOWNERSFOR THE USE OF THE LINE AREAA lump-sum compensation determined in theexpropriation proceedings is paid for the right ofuse of the transmission line area. Fingrid does notdecide on the expropriation compensations, butthese are specified by an impartial expropriationcommittee in accordance with the act concerningexpropriation.If a landowner suffers disadvantage or damage inconjunction with the maintenance of the transmissionline, these cases are agreed upon with thelandowner individually in each case.20 mBorder zone10 m10 mRight of wayTransmission line areaBuilding prohibition zoneBorder zoneThe width of an 110 kV right of way is generally 26–30 m.The width of a 220 kV right of way is generally 32–38 m.The width of a 400 kV right of way is generally 36–42 m.20 mThe width of the border zone is 10 metres on both sides of the line, always a total of 20 metres.UNDERGROUND STRUCTURESOverhead earth wireEarth wire peakCrossarmInsulator stringInsulator unitPhase conductorHorizontal braceROBUST BUT USEFUL NEIGHBOURThe transmission line area is the area for whichThe tower area ofFoundation4 Fingrid has expropriated a right of use. The right ofa transmission line5Ground electrodeuse imposes usage restrictions on the landowner.tower extends over aGuy anchordistance ofThe voltage levels of transmission lines in Finland3 metres from theare 110, 220 and 400 kilovolts (kV)*. The voltageoverground towerThe tower type shown in the picture is the mostlevel can be recognised by the length of the insulatorstring and the number of insulator discs:supporting steel towers without guys are alsostructures.commonly used guyed portal tower, but so-called self-used.Voltage levelkVLength ofinsulator stringNumber ofinsulator discs110 approx. 1 metre 6–8220 approx. 2 metres 10–12400 approx. 4 metres 18–21*1 kV = 1,000 volts (V)3 m3 m 3 m3 mCENTRE LINE OF TRANSMISSION LINELegGuyNumber plateA guyed two-legged portal tower.CENTRE LINE OF TRANSMISSION LINE3 m3 m3 m 3 mA single-legged steel latticetower without guys.


Taking care of the linesTRANSMISSION LINE INSPECTIONS CONSTITUTETHE BASIS FOR MAINTENANCEAs the owner of the transmission line, Fingrid hasan obligation to maintain the line in the conditionprescribed by electric safety regulations. In orderto fulfil this obligation, the company’s employeesand service providers have the right to move inthe transmission line area on foot and by usingmachinery and vehicles, to use roads and pathsleading to the transmission line area and to useother areas, if necessary. The condition of thetransmission line and the height of vegetation inthe transmission line area are monitored with thehelp of inspections carried out at intervals of 1 to3 years.The inspections are used for observing issues such as:- vegetation in the transmission line area, newstructures, excavations- potential inclination of tower structures, conditionof steel parts- grounding and foundations- condition of insulators and conductors.In the winter, snow accumulating on the conductorsis removed whenever necessary.REGULAR MANAGEMENT OF TREESGUARANTEES RELIABILITYTrees in the right-of-way are cleared mechanicallyor manually every 5 to 8 years.Trees in the border zones of transmission lines aremanaged at intervals of 10 to 25 years. Excessivelytall trees are felled or their tops are cut by 2 to 4metres by means of a helicopter. Trees top-endedwith helicopter sawing do not need to be harvestedright away. Decay in a tree with a cut topprogresses so slowly that decay damage does notreduce the value of timber if its felling is combinedwith the logging of some adjacent forestarea in the coming years. It is also worthwhile loggingborder zone trees, whose tops have not beencut, at the same time.Fingrid informs landowners by letter of the clearingof rights-of-ways and management of trees inthe border zones.If there is a need to fell the trees in the borderzone, Fingrid endeavours to arrange joint fellingand sales of the timber. However, as the owner ofthe trees, the landowner has a right to decide howto arrange the harvesting and sales of border zonetrees, which need to be felled because of transmissionline maintenance. In any case, it is importantto remember that logging close to a transmissionline requires special professional skills, and landownersshould not do this on their own.If most of the trees in the border zone are too tall,it is usually most sensible to use total manage-6ment of the border zone so that all other treesexcept those that are considerably shorter than the 7trees shown in the diagram on page 5 are felled inthe border zone.Forest management for the border zones of transmissionline areas involves many special features,which should be taken into account when decidingon the forest regeneration and managementmeasures. In order to enhance forest managementin these special areas, Forestry DevelopmentCentre Tapio has drawn up forest managementrecommendations for border zones. These recommendationsare presented in a forest managementcard, which can be downloaded (in Finnish) fromFingrid’s website.COMPENSATIONS FOR THE USE OF PRIVATE ROADSFingrid signs 10-year maintenance road agreementswith road owners on the use of privateroads leading to the transmission line areas.Fingrid, the Central Union of Agricultural Producersand Forest Owners (MTK) and the CentralUnion of Swedish-Speaking Agricultural Producersin Finland (SLC) have drawn up a compensationrecommendation concerning the use of privateroads. Among other things, the recommendationspecifies the unit prices of road usage fees forvarious usage categories.


IF A TREE BEGINS TO FALL TOWARDS A TRANS-MISSION LINE DESPITE PRECAUTIONS, FOLLOWTHESE INSTRUCTIONS:Interrupt your work immediately.Bound so that only one foot touches theground at a time and proceed to a distanceof at least 20 metres from the tree asquickly as possible.If a falling tree hits the line or gets caughtin the conductors, notify Fingrid’s NetworkWhat you need to know before you do anythingFELLING OF TREES AND STORAGE OF TIMBERNear a transmission line, the trees must notbe cut towards the line. Always verify thecorrect felling direction in accordance withthe safety instructions for timber harvestingwork. If necessary, Fingrid will provide furtherinformation and felling assistance.For safety reasons, timber or energy woodmust not be stored under a transmission lineor nearer than 10 metres from the closestphase conductor of the line in the horizontaldirection.Control Centre (tel. 030 395 4300) of thisSAFE USE OF MACHINERY8 immediately or call the nation-wide emer-Ordinary agricultural machinery can be operated9Voltage Minimum distance Minimum distancegency number 112.under a transmission line. Caution must be exercisedwhen operating agricultural machinery near trans mission or load beneath from phaselevel of to machinery to machinery or loadMake sure that nobody goes close to thesuspended tree.the tower structures. If, however, tower structuresline phase conductors conductors inhorizontal directionare damaged, inform Fingrid immediately.DO NOT TRY TO LOOSEN A TREE WHICH TOUCHES110 kV 3 metres 5 metresPHASE CONDUCTORS BEFORE:If you are using an excavator, crane or other220 kV 4 metres 5 metresthe line has been de-energised,machinery near a transmission line, make sure400 kV 5 metres 5 metresthe line has been provided with workthat you do not end up too close to the live phasegrounding, andconductors. No machinery must be brought into IF THE LOADER OR LOAD TOUCHES THE CONDUCthetower area.you obtain permission from the owner ofTORS WHILE USING MACHINERY, PROCEED ASFOLLOWS:the line to loosen the tree.The table below presents the permitted minimumdistances of machinery with potential load fromYou are initially safe inside the cabin.the phase conductors of a transmission line.Try to run the machine off the transmission line.If the machine catches fire or if its tyresstart to smoke, jump out of the machineNever drive machinery between the tower legs,under a guy wire, or closer than 3 metres fromso that both of your feet touch the groundthe tower structures!simultaneously.Do not touch the machine and groundTrees located close to a transmission linesimultaneously.should always be felled by professionals.Bound so that only one foot touches theground at a time and proceed to a distanceof at least 20 metres from the machine asfast as possible.Contact Fingrid immediately even if thetransmission line is not visibly damaged.Make sure that nobody can access the area.5 metres110 kV 3 metres220 kV 4 metres400 kV 5 metres


10 11SAFE CULTIVATION AND PASTURAGEA right-of-way can be used for cultivation, anddomestic animals can graze safely in the area. Itcan also be used as a vegetable garden, and forexample berry bushes can be planted there. Whenplanting bushes, leave a passage in the centre lineof the transmission line so that line inspectors andmaintenance personnel can either walk or movetheir machinery from one tower to another. Fruittrees and Christmas trees can be cultivated in aright-of-way just as long as their height remainswithin the permitted limits. Growing of trees mustbe agreed upon with Fingrid through a growthclearance area contract.MAKE SURE THAT ROW COVERS STAY IN PLACEIf a planted area is covered with protective rowcovers, use weights or other fasteners to makesure that the covers will stay in place also whenthere is a gusty and strong wind. Warming of airunder the cover causes a buoyant effect, whichmay loosen the cover and send it flying high intothe air. If, despite precautions, covers fly onto thetransmission line structures, never try to removethem yourself. Fingrid must be notified accordinglywithout delay.Remember that the “fuse” never blows in a highvoltagetransmission line; it is always dangerous!More detailed advice for grounding matters isavailable from Fingrid.MAKING OF OPEN FIRE IS PROHIBITEDFor safety reasons, it is forbidden to make an openfire under a transmission line or in its immediatevicinity. If you intend to burn grass within a distanceof less than 50 metres from the line, contact Fingrid.KEEP A FISHING ROD FAR AWAY FROM A LINEIf you are fishing, make sure that neither the rodor the line can reach closer than 5 metres from thephase conductors of the transmission line.DO NOT FLY A KITE IN A RIGHT-OF-WAYFor safety reasons, flying a kite is not allowed inthe right-of-way of a transmission line.TRAMPOLINES AND CLIMBING FRAMESBecause of personal safety, it is forbidden to placetrampolines, climbing frames and other devices,which can bring persons higher than the normalground surface, under a transmission line.DO NOT SPRAY WATER ON THE TRANSMISSION LINEArtificial irrigation systems can be used in thenormal way in the vicinity of a transmission linejust as long as the water jet does not hit theline. When setting up, moving and dismantlingirrigation systems, make sure that the irrigationequipment does not come dangerously close tothe phase conductors.If the phase conductor of a transmission lineis broken or otherwise hanging close to theground, it is highly dangerous to go near theconductor!GROUNDING OF FENCES AND TIN ROOFSNo significant voltages are usually created in abarbed wire fence or a metal wire net fence bythe electric field of a transmission line. These arewell grounded through fence poles, grass or othervegetation. If the fence runs for a long distanceclose to the transmission line or if the fence isisolated from the ground, a harmful voltage may,however, be created in the fence. In this case, thefence must be grounded.The electric field of the transmission line may also resultin a charging voltage, which is harmless in itself,being charged in tin roofs located under the line.This can also be removed easily by grounding theroof to the ground for instance through gutter pipes.FINGRID PROVIDES INSTRUCTIONS FOR BLASTING WORKIf you are going to quarry rock or carry out blastingwork within a distance of less than 100 metresfrom the line, ask for instructions from Fingrid.DO NOT REFUEL MACHINERY NEAR A TRANSMISSION LINEFor the sake of fire safety, avoid refuelling avehicle or other machinery within less than 20metres from a transmission line.CLIMBING IN TOWERS POSES A DANGER TO LIFEIt is very dangerous and absolutely forbidden toclimb in transmission line towers. It is also forbiddento attach anything to the towers.INFORM FINGRID OF A LINE FAULTThanks to regular inspections and maintenance,line faults are rare, but they cannot be avoidedcompletely. If you notice a defect or an abnormalphenomenon in a line, please notify Fingrid’sNetwork Control Centre (tel. 030 395 4300) of thisas soon as possible.


Many ways to utilisethe transmission line areaHUNTINGGood visibility renders transmission line areas suitedfor hunting. For safety reasons, the shootingplaces must be located so that the line structuresare not in the line of fire. The erection of huntingtowers should be agreed upon in advance withFingrid. Game fields can be established on oldfields located in rights-of-ways. A permit for clearingnew fields should be requested from Fingrid.ESTABLISHING A ROAD OR OUTDOOR ROUTEYou can jog and ski in a transmission line area. Apermit from the landowner and a statement fromFingrid are required for the building of a road,outdoor recreation route, jogging track or skiingtrack in a transmission line area.USE OF SNOWMOBILESWith the landowner’s and Fingrid’s permit, atransmission line area can be used for snowmobileriding. Snowmobile riding is, however, strictly forbiddenin tower areas. A snowmobile route mustbe placed so far from the towers that there is norisk of collision with the tower legs or guys.In addition to cultivation and grazing, rights-ofwayscan be utilised in many ways.BUILDINGS AND STRUCTURESline. It is advisable to inform Fingrid, which decideson the placing of power line bird markers, of other similar components. The sound caused bynear the surface of conductors, insulators and12It is forbidden to construct a building in a13RECREATIONAL USEStransmission line area. If you want to build otherlocations where birds collide with a line.corona is loudest in moist weather or in the winterA transmission line area is suited for many types structures such as shelters, roads, parking areas,when hoar frost accumulates on the conductors. ItThere has been extensive research on the potentialhealth impacts of the electric and magneticof recreational uses. You can hike and pick berries overhead lines, underground cables, water pipes,is practically almost impossible to prevent coronaand mushrooms in a transmission line area. Transmissionlines also constitute habitats favoured by a permit must be acquired from Fingrid for thesewers, lighting posts, flag poles, fish basins etc.,discharge completely, but since the sound is alwaysan indication of energy losses, the goal is tofields created around transmission lines. Based onresearch findings, these fields do not cause a riskbutterflies and many plant species.location and building of these.reduce this phenomenon. Corona occurs mainly atto people or animals. Publications on this topic inthe 400 kV voltage level.Finnish can be downloaded from Fingrid’s website.Long lighting lines and other lines laid over theground under a transmission line may also causea hazard. A permit is also needed if you wish tomake changes to a structure built earlier in thetransmission line area.SOIL EXTRACTION AND DISPOSAL, DITCHINGA permit from Fingrid is required for the extractionof gravel, sand, clay, earth and peat in theright-of-way. The same applies to ditching andsoil heaps being dumped in a transmission linearea.It is prohibited to dig ditches in a tower area.The sides of a ditch must never be closer thanthree metres from the tower and guy structures.If the depth of a ditch to be dug is more thanhalf a metre, the underground grounding electrodesmust be taken into account. Fingrid mustbe informed immediately of broken groundingelectrodes.Good to knowScientific research has not found that transmissionlines would have adverse effects on the healthor fertility of pasturing animals. It has not beenestablished that the licking of wooden towerswhich have been treated with creosote would havenegative effects on animals. A statement on thisissue has been submitted, among others, by theDepartment of Food and Environmental Hygieneof the University of Veterinary Medicine in Finlandon 25 October 1994.Power line bird markers can be used on theconductors near the routes of migratory birds orin locations where birds nest to warn birds of theAccording to the Finnish Meteorological Institute,transmission lines do not increase lightningnor direct the movements of thunder clouds, butthe lines actually increase lightning safety. Sincethe transmission line towers are usually higherthan their immediate environment and sincethey are also grounded, they ”attract” strokes oflightning which would strike in any case in theadjacent area.The line is constructed so that a stroke of lightningis guided through the overhead ground wireinto the ground in a harmless manner. In otherwords, it is not advisable to stay in the immediatevicinity of a transmission line during thunderstorm.Transmission lines cannot influence the number ofstrokes of lightning, either. Their number dependsentirely on the properties of the thunder cloud,not on the underlying towers.The buzzing sound heard near a transmissionline is caused by corona discharge occurring onthe surface of the conductors or insulators. Thecorona phenomenon is harmless to people. Thephenomenon is caused by the ionisation of airHigh-voltage lines may also cause sounds createdas a result of wind which shakes the various partsof the line such as steel towers, conductors, crossarmsor insulators. These sounds occur irrespectiveof whether the line is live or not.


Some medical devices inserted in the body (suchas pacemakers) may malfunction under a transmissionline. Disturbance in a pacemaker can be reducedthrough adjustments and especially throughthe selection of an appropriate pacemaker.FM radio transmission (VHF), i.e. the most commonbroadcast or local radio transmission, is notdisturbed by transmission lines.A transmission line disturbs the television signalonly in very rare cases. If problems occur, contactFingrid’s experts.A hand-held fluorescent lamp may light up undera transmission line as a result of the electric fieldcreated by the conductors. The current passingthrough the lamp is naturally much weaker thannormally. The lamp glows weakly, and the lightemitted from it cannot be compared to the lightemitted in the normal use of the lamp. The lightcan only be seen when it is dusky. This purelyelectric phenomenon does not mean that it wouldcause a health hazard.One of the properties of the electric field of atransmission line is that electrically conductiveobjects which are isolated from the ground andlocated close to the line – such as metal shovels,tools etc. – become electrically charged. Anyoneworking under a line also becomes electricallycharged. Usually, you do not even notice this, butwhen you are wearing footwear with a thick sole,such as rubber boots, you may feel a faint sparkwhen you touch a grounded object, for instancea metallic fence pole. The phenomenon is similarto and as harmless as the spark which is createdwhen taking off a sweater made of synthetic fibres.In the same way, the sparking of an umbrella,for instance, under a transmission line is harmlessand caused by electric charge.Projects near transmissionline requiring permitTHESE ARE NEEDED FOR PERMITS AND STATEMENTS:A map indicating the location of the intendedproject and the transmission line.A layout drawing indicating the exact locationof the project with respect to the transmissionline.The name, address and telephone numberof the applicant so that we can obtain additionalinformation if this is necessary.14 15Send the application to the below address:Fingrid OyjRisteämälausunnotP.O. Box 530FI-00101 Helsinki, Finlandor by e-mail toristeamalausunnot@fingrid.fi


FINGRID OYJArkadiankatu 23 B, P.O. Box 530, FI-00101 Helsinki, Finland | Tel. +358 (0)30 395 5000 | Telefax +358 (0)30 395 5196 | www.fingrid.fiHämeenlinna Network Control Centre | Tel. +358 (0)30 395 4300 (24 h duty)

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