Equipment Safety

Keeping DTE Transformers Clear

These green or grey metal boxes may be a familiar site in your neighborhood. But did you know these boxes provide power to you and your neighbors? When landscaping or structures block this equipment, it creates unsafe work environments for our crews, poses potential safety hazards for you and your neighbors and can cause prolonged outages.
There are many reasons why it’s important to maintain recommended clearances around this and other equipment.
  • For Your Safety
    In the event of a fire, DTE must access this equipment to shut off power to your home before firefighters can enter. Much like a fire hydrant, this equipment must be accessed quickly. Keeping these boxes clear of landscaping and other obstructions will keep you and your neighbors safe.
  • For Our Crews’ Safety
    Crews need at least eight feet clear in the front and two feet on all other sides to safely work on a transformer. Landscaping and other obstructions can crowd a work area, causing a hazard. We may need to remove obstructions before work begins.

Remove Pre-Existing Obstructions

We ask that you safely and promptly remove any obstructions and follow the clearance rules, leaving eight feet clear in the front and two feet on all other sides.
Even if the obstructions were installed or planted long before you purchased your home, as the current homeowner, you are responsible for maintaining proper clearances.
When our crews need to quickly locate and safely access the transformer for repairs and maintenance, anything blocking equipment may be removed/trimmed and could be damaged. DTE will not replace landscaping or other items removed to gain safe access to the transformer. Debris will be left onsite for the homeowner to dispose.
If you are in the planning stages of landscaping, be sure to also refer to our “right tree, right place” guide. There you will find the best tree fit for your home or business while avoiding interference with overhead lines.
Remember to dig safely and call MISS DIG at 8-1-1 to locate underground utilities before you dig or plant. It’s free and it’s the law!