Sunday, August 3, 2014

Bill's Poison Pen: The Mighty Oak

By William Sandmann

"From a tiny acorn the mighty oak grows." I might be incorrect in in the exact wording of this phrase but I'm sure it gets the point across. 

I have an abused might oak tree but its growth is curtailed by the trimming of its branches by Duke Energy. You see, the pole mounted electric wires interfere with the normal growth of the tree and are trimmed about every 4 to 5 years by the Utility Company to reduce or eliminate the leakage current to ground. The reason being leakage current becomes an electric load which is not metered, thus causing a loss of revenue to Duke Energy. My tree looks like a giant slingshot, and is not beautiful.

Since Fort Thomas is rich in beauty because of its great trees, I would like to be a part of the wonderful landscaping the trees afford. 

Being an electric engineer, I feel there is a solution to this problem. Why can't the red insulating sleeves that are seen everywhere during maintenance work by Duke, be placed around the medium voltage conductors? This would save trimming the tree, allowing it to fill out and become what nature intended. I realize there would be a cost for the sleeves, but to me it would be worthwhile. My only thought that impacts this solution is Duke Energy would set the cost so high I couldn't afford it. 
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Mr. Sandmann is a Fort Thomas resident that ponders small problems that may be improved in our city. If you have an idea for this column comment below or visit the FortThomasMatters Facebook, Twitter or Instagram accounts. 

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