EDMOND, Okla. (KFOR) – Avery and Corbyn Rhodes say they used to love driving down their quaint Edmond street after a long day. 

“It was like our therapy,” said Avery. “It’s a bit of a rolling hill and you see these gorgeous trees on either side.”

But their hearts sank last week, when they turned onto S. Air Depot, between 15th and 33rd, and saw the aftermath of a crew cutting trees away from powerlines. 

“I was just nauseous. It’s just so sad,” said Avery. 

Corbyn told KFOR he believes hundreds of trees were cut down. 

The couple said they understand it’s necessary to trim the trees away from powerlines. 

“But cutting the trees down to the stump… That’s going to cause a whole host of problems,” said Corbyn. “Living close to Lake Arcadia, there’s bald eagles, a lot of deer, a lot of wildlife out here, and they’re suffering the consequences of that… We’re going to have a lot of runoffs, a lot of erosion.” 

The Rhodes add they’ve struggled to get answers and say time is of the essence, since crews are still out Monday cutting trees down. 

“I tried contacting OG&E to just say ‘Can I ask some questions about this?’” said Corbyn. “They had to leave a message and the gentleman said it may take up to three weeks for somebody to get back with you. Well obviously, in three weeks the damage is already done.”

We know our customers depend on us to provide reliable electric service to power their lives, homes and businesses. Trees that grow into power lines often cause damage to the electric grid, lead to outages, and create a safety hazard for our customers and crews. OG&E’s certified line-clearance arborists trim and remove trees to protect the grid and provide reliable service to our customers, and to minimize potential safety hazards to our customers and crews.

This tree work is part of routine inspection and maintenance of 206 power poles, 25 of which are located on Air Depot Blvd. This project requires inspecting the structural integrity of the power poles to determine the remaining strength. To inspect the poles, tree limbs and bushes are cleared 10 feet around each pole. Any pole that did not pass inspection will be replaced or restored to bring the pole back to full strength. Tree removals can also occur when trees are located directly beneath wires or close to poles. Trees that require consistent trimming must be removed to ensure reliable electric service for our customers.  

We understand the importance trees provide and our responsibility to serve our customers and the environment. Customers can help minimize outages by making sure to plant the right tree in the right place. Learn more at OGE.com’s vegetation management page.

OG&E Statement