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Living adjacent

to a transmission line
Contents Fingrid in brief
3 Fingrid in brief Electricity is an inseparable part of the everyday life
of all those living in Finland. Life would be much more
4 Let’s stay on good terms Fingrid has a right to use
complicated without electricity.
the line areas Compensation paid to landowners for
the use of the line area Robust but useful neighbour In Finland, Fingrid is the enterprise which takes care of
7 Taking care of the lines Transmission line inspections the functioning of the nation-wide grid, the backbone
constitute the basis for maintenance Regular manage- of electricity transmission.
ment of trees guarantees reliability Compensations for The nation-wide grid is the main network for electricity
the use of private roads transmission, to which the major power plants, industrial
9 What you need to know before you do anything plants and regional distribution networks are connected.
Felling of trees and storage of timber Safe use of The transmission grid managed by Fingrid encompasses
machinery Safe cultivation and pasturage Do not approx. 14,000 kilometres of 400, 220 and 110 kilovolt
2 transmission lines and more than 100 substations. 3
spray water on the transmission line Make sure that
row covers stay in place Grounding of fences and tin
Fingrid makes sure that the electricity supply in
roofs Making an open fire is prohibited Fingrid
Finland continues to work without problems also in the
provides intructions for blasting work Do not refuel
future. In the coming years, almost 3,000 kilometres
machinery near a transmission line Climbing in towers
of new transmission lines and about 30 substations will
poses a danger to life Keep a fishing rod far away
be built in Finland. In this way, Fingrid is contributing to
from a line Do not fly a kite in a right-of-way
the development of the Finnish society and the welfare of
Trampolines and climbing frames Inform Fingrid of
all those living in Finland.
a line fault
12 Many ways to utilise the transmission line area Fingrid’s work is based on the Electricity Market Act. It is
Recreational uses Hunting Establishing a road or Fingrid’s duty to promote the functioning of the
outdoor route Use of snowmobiles Buildings and electricity market by maintaining a secure transmission
structures Soil extraction and disposal, ditching system and to ensure reliable transmission connections
between Finland and other countries.
13 Good to know
15 Projects near transmission line requiring permit

Fingrid Oyj’s
power transmission grid
1 January 2010

400 kV grid
220 kV grid
110 kV grid
lines of other companies
20 m
Overhead earth wire
20 m
Earth wire peak
Crossarm
Insulator string

Let’s stay on good terms COMPENSATION PAID TO LANDOWNERS Insulator unit


FOR THE USE OF THE LINE AREA Phase conductor
10 m 10 m
An electricity transmission line is a neighbour A lump-sum compensation determined in the
which does not wish to disturb others or be dis- expropriation proceedings is paid for the right of
turbed. This brochure contains information and use of the transmission line area. Fingrid does not
safety instructions, which make living adjacent to decide on the expropriation compensations, but Horizontal brace
a transmission line safe and trouble-free. these are specified by an impartial expropriation Right of way
committee in accordance with the act concerning Border zone Transmission line area Border zone Leg

FINGRID HAS A RIGHT TO USE THE LINE AREAS expropriation. Building prohibition zone Guy
Fingrid does not own the land areas under the If a landowner suffers disadvantage or damage in The 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.
transmission lines or the trees located within conjunction with the maintenance of the trans- The width of a 400 kV right of way is generally 36–42 m. Number plate
these areas. These are property of the landowner. mission line, these cases are agreed upon with the
Through expropriation, Fingrid has acquired a landowner individually in each case.
The width of the border zone is 10 metres on both sides of the line, always a total of 20 metres.

permanent right to use the transmission line area.


This gives the company a right to for example use ROBUST BUT USEFUL NEIGHBOUR

UNDERGROUND STRUCTURES
the transmission line area, restrict building in the The transmission line area is the area for which The tower area of
area, clear vegetation in the area, and manage Fingrid has expropriated a right of use. The right of Foundation
4 a transmission line 5
excessively tall trees in the border zone. use imposes usage restrictions on the landowner. tower extends over a
Ground electrode
Guy anchor
The company’s right and obligation to give the distance of
The voltage levels of transmission lines in Finland
instructions presented in this brochure is based 3 metres from the
are 110, 220 and 400 kilovolts (kV)*. The voltage

NE
overground tower The tower type shown in the picture is the most
on the Electrical Safety Act and on the expropria-

LI
level can be recognised by the length of the insu-

ON
structures. commonly used guyed portal tower, but so-called self-
tion of the transmission line area on the basis of a

SI
lator string and the number of insulator discs:

IS
supporting steel towers without guys are also used.

SM
permit given by the Council of State.

AN
TR
Voltage level Length of Number of

OF
kV insulator string insulator discs

NE
3m

LI
110 approx. 1 metre 6–8

RE
NT
220 approx. 2 metres 10–12

CE
3m 3m
400 approx. 4 metres 18–21
3m
*1 kV = 1,000 volts (V)

A guyed two-legged portal tower. LINE


ION
MISS 3m
TR ANS
IN E OF
EL
CENTR
3m

3m
3m

A single-legged steel lattice


tower without guys.
Taking care of the lines Fingrid informs landowners by letter of the clear-
ing of rights-of-ways and management of trees in
the border zones.
TRANSMISSION LINE INSPECTIONS CONSTITUTE
THE BASIS FOR MAINTENANCE If there is a need to fell the trees in the border
As the owner of the transmission line, Fingrid has zone, Fingrid endeavours to arrange joint felling
an obligation to maintain the line in the condition and sales of the timber. However, as the owner of
prescribed by electric safety regulations. In order the trees, the landowner has a right to decide how
to fulfil this obligation, the company’s employees to arrange the harvesting and sales of border zone
and service providers have the right to move in trees, which need to be felled because of transmis-
the transmission line area on foot and by using sion line maintenance. In any case, it is important
machinery and vehicles, to use roads and paths to remember that logging close to a transmission
leading to the transmission line area and to use line requires special professional skills, and land-
other areas, if necessary. The condition of the owners should not do this on their own.
transmission line and the height of vegetation in
the transmission line area are monitored with the If most of the trees in the border zone are too tall,
help of inspections carried out at intervals of 1 to it is usually most sensible to use total manage-
3 years. ment of the border zone so that all other trees
6 except those that are considerably shorter than the 7
The inspections are used for observing issues such as: trees shown in the diagram on page 5 are felled in
- vegetation in the transmission line area, new the border zone.
structures, excavations
Forest management for the border zones of trans-
- potential inclination of tower structures, condi- mission line areas involves many special features,
tion of steel parts which should be taken into account when decid-
- grounding and foundations ing on the forest regeneration and management
- condition of insulators and conductors. measures. In order to enhance forest manage-
In the winter, snow accumulating on the conduc- ment in these special areas, Forestry Development
tors is removed whenever necessary. Centre Tapio has drawn up forest management
recommendations for border zones. These recom-
REGULAR MANAGEMENT OF TREES mendations are presented in a forest management
GUARANTEES RELIABILITY card, which can be downloaded (in Finnish) from
Trees in the right-of-way are cleared mechanically Fingrid’s website.
or manually every 5 to 8 years.
COMPENSATIONS FOR THE USE OF PRIVATE ROADS
Trees in the border zones of transmission lines are Fingrid signs 10-year maintenance road agree-
managed at intervals of 10 to 25 years. Excessively ments with road owners on the use of private
tall trees are felled or their tops are cut by 2 to 4 roads leading to the transmission line areas.
metres by means of a helicopter. Trees top-ended Fingrid, the Central Union of Agricultural Pro-
with helicopter sawing do not need to be har- ducers and Forest Owners (MTK) and the Central
vested right away. Decay in a tree with a cut top Union of Swedish-Speaking Agricultural Producers
progresses so slowly that decay damage does not in Finland (SLC) have drawn up a compensation
reduce the value of timber if its felling is com- recommendation concerning the use of private
bined with the logging of some adjacent forest roads. Among other things, the recommendation
area in the coming years. It is also worthwhile log- specifies the unit prices of road usage fees for
ging border zone trees, whose tops have not been various usage categories.
cut, at the same time.
What you need to know before you do anything
FELLING OF TREES AND STORAGE OF TIMBER
Near a transmission line, the trees must not
be cut towards the line. Always verify the 5 metres
IF A TREE BEGINS TO FALL TOWARDS A TRANS- correct felling direction in accordance with
MISSION LINE DESPITE PRECAUTIONS, FOLLOW the safety instructions for timber harvesting
110 kV 3 metres
220 kV 4 metres
THESE INSTRUCTIONS: work. If necessary, Fingrid will provide further 400 kV 5 metres
Interrupt your work immediately. information and felling assistance.
Bound so that only one foot touches the
ground at a time and proceed to a distance For safety reasons, timber or energy wood
of at least 20 metres from the tree as must not be stored under a transmission line
quickly as possible. or nearer than 10 metres from the closest
phase conductor of the line in the horizontal
If a falling tree hits the line or gets caught
in the conductors, notify Fingrid’s Network direction.
Control Centre (tel. 030 395 4300) of this
SAFE USE OF MACHINERY
8 immediately or call the nation-wide emer- Ordinary agricultural machinery can be operated 9
Voltage Minimum distance Minimum distance
gency number 112. under a transmission line. Caution must be exer- level of to machinery to machinery or load
Make sure that nobody goes close to the cised when operating agricultural machinery near trans­mission or load beneath from phase
suspended tree. the tower structures. If, however, tower structures line phase conductors conductors in
horizontal direction
are damaged, inform Fingrid immediately.
DO NOT TRY TO LOOSEN A TREE WHICH TOUCHES 110 kV 3 metres 5 metres
PHASE CONDUCTORS BEFORE: If you are using an excavator, crane or other 220 kV 4 metres 5 metres
the line has been de-energised, machinery near a transmission line, make sure 400 kV 5 metres 5 metres
that you do not end up too close to the live phase
the line has been provided with work
grounding, and conductors. No machinery must be brought into IF THE LOADER OR LOAD TOUCHES THE CONDUC-
the tower area. TORS WHILE USING MACHINERY, PROCEED AS
you obtain permission from the owner of
FOLLOWS:
the line to loosen the tree. The table below presents the permitted minimum
distances of machinery with potential load from You 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 tyres
Never drive machinery between the tower legs,
start to smoke, jump out of the machine
under a guy wire, or closer than 3 metres from so that both of your feet touch the ground
the tower structures! simultaneously.
Do not touch the machine and ground
Trees located close to a transmission line simultaneously.
should always be felled by professionals.
Bound so that only one foot touches the
ground at a time and proceed to a distance
of at least 20 metres from the machine as
fast as possible.
Contact Fingrid immediately even if the
transmission line is not visibly damaged.
Make sure that nobody can access the area.
10 11
SAFE CULTIVATION AND PASTURAGE MAKE SURE THAT ROW COVERS STAY IN PLACE Remember that the “fuse” never blows in a high- KEEP A FISHING ROD FAR AWAY FROM A LINE
A right-of-way can be used for cultivation, and If a planted area is covered with protective row voltage transmission line; it is always dangerous! If you are fishing, make sure that neither the rod
domestic animals can graze safely in the area. It covers, use weights or other fasteners to make or the line can reach closer than 5 metres from the
can also be used as a vegetable garden, and for sure that the covers will stay in place also when phase conductors of the transmission line.
example berry bushes can be planted there. When there is a gusty and strong wind. Warming of air More detailed advice for grounding matters is
planting bushes, leave a passage in the centre line under the cover causes a buoyant effect, which available from Fingrid. DO NOT FLY A KITE IN A RIGHT-OF-WAY
of the transmission line so that line inspectors and may loosen the cover and send it flying high into For safety reasons, flying a kite is not allowed in
maintenance personnel can either walk or move the air. If, despite precautions, covers fly onto the MAKING OF OPEN FIRE IS PROHIBITED the right-of-way of a transmission line.
their machinery from one tower to another. Fruit transmission line structures, never try to remove For safety reasons, it is forbidden to make an open
trees and Christmas trees can be cultivated in a them yourself. Fingrid must be notified according- fire under a transmission line or in its immediate TRAMPOLINES AND CLIMBING FRAMES
right-of-way just as long as their height remains ly without delay. vicinity. If you intend to burn grass within a distance Because of personal safety, it is forbidden to place
within the permitted limits. Growing of trees must of less than 50 metres from the line, contact Fingrid. trampolines, climbing frames and other devices,
be agreed upon with Fingrid through a growth GROUNDING OF FENCES AND TIN ROOFS which can bring persons higher than the normal
clearance area contract. No significant voltages are usually created in a FINGRID PROVIDES INSTRUCTIONS FOR BLASTING WORK ground surface, under a transmission line.
barbed wire fence or a metal wire net fence by If you are going to quarry rock or carry out blas-
DO NOT SPRAY WATER ON THE TRANSMISSION LINE the electric field of a transmission line. These are ting work within a distance of less than 100 met- INFORM FINGRID OF A LINE FAULT
Artificial irrigation systems can be used in the well grounded through fence poles, grass or other res from the line, ask for instructions from Fingrid. Thanks to regular inspections and maintenance,
normal way in the vicinity of a transmission line vegetation. If the fence runs for a long distance line faults are rare, but they cannot be avoided
just as long as the water jet does not hit the close to the transmission line or if the fence is DO NOT REFUEL MACHINERY NEAR A TRANSMISSION LINE completely. If you notice a defect or an abnormal
line. When setting up, moving and dismantling isolated from the ground, a harmful voltage may, For the sake of fire safety, avoid refuelling a phenomenon in a line, please notify Fingrid’s
irrigation systems, make sure that the irrigation however, be created in the fence. In this case, the vehicle or other machinery within less than 20 Network Control Centre (tel. 030 395 4300) of this
equipment does not come dangerously close to fence must be grounded. metres from a transmission line. as soon as possible.
the phase conductors.
The electric field of the transmission line may also re-
CLIMBING IN TOWERS POSES A DANGER TO LIFE
sult in a charging voltage, which is harmless in itself,
If the phase conductor of a transmission line It is very dangerous and absolutely forbidden to
being charged in tin roofs located under the line.
is broken or otherwise hanging close to the climb in transmission line towers. It is also forbid-
ground, it is highly dangerous to go near the This can also be removed easily by grounding the
den to attach anything to the towers.
conductor! roof to the ground for instance through gutter pipes.
Good to know The line is constructed so that a stroke of light-
ning is guided through the overhead ground wire
into the ground in a harmless manner. In other
Scientific research has not found that transmis- words, it is not advisable to stay in the immediate
sion lines would have adverse effects on the health vicinity of a transmission line during thunder-
or fertility of pasturing animals. It has not been storm.
established that the licking of wooden towers
which have been treated with creosote would have Transmission lines cannot influence the number of
negative effects on animals. A statement on this strokes of lightning, either. Their number depends
issue has been submitted, among others, by the entirely on the properties of the thunder cloud,
Department of Food and Environmental Hygiene not on the underlying towers.
of the University of Veterinary Medicine in Finland The buzzing sound heard near a transmission
Many ways to utilise riding. Snowmobile riding is, however, strictly for-
bidden in tower areas. A snowmobile route must
on 25 October 1994. line is caused by corona discharge occurring on

the transmission line area be placed so far from the towers that there is no
risk of collision with the tower legs or guys.
Power line bird markers can be used on the
conductors near the routes of migratory birds or
the surface of the conductors or insulators. The
corona phenomenon is harmless to people. The
in locations where birds nest to warn birds of the phenomenon is caused by the ionisation of air
In addition to cultivation and grazing, rights-of- near the surface of conductors, insulators and
BUILDINGS AND STRUCTURES line. It is advisable to inform Fingrid, which deci-
12 ways can be utilised in many ways. other similar components. The sound caused by 13
It is forbidden to construct a building in a des on the placing of power line bird markers, of
transmission line area. If you want to build other locations where birds collide with a line. corona is loudest in moist weather or in the winter
RECREATIONAL USES
structures such as shelters, roads, parking areas, when hoar frost accumulates on the conductors. It
A transmission line area is suited for many types There has been extensive research on the po- is practically almost impossible to prevent corona
of recreational uses. You can hike and pick berries overhead lines, underground cables, water pipes, tential health impacts of the electric and magnetic
sewers, lighting posts, flag poles, fish basins etc., discharge completely, but since the sound is al-
and mushrooms in a transmission line area. Trans- fields created around transmission lines. Based on
a permit must be acquired from Fingrid for the ways an indication of energy losses, the goal is to
mission lines also constitute habitats favoured by research findings, these fields do not cause a risk
location and building of these. reduce this phenomenon. Corona occurs mainly at
butterflies and many plant species. to people or animals. Publications on this topic in the 400 kV voltage level.
Long lighting lines and other lines laid over the Finnish can be downloaded from Fingrid’s website.
HUNTING High-voltage lines may also cause sounds created
ground under a transmission line may also cause According to the Finnish Meteorological Insti-
Good visibility renders transmission line areas sui- a hazard. A permit is also needed if you wish to as a result of wind which shakes the various parts
ted for hunting. For safety reasons, the shooting tute, transmission lines do not increase lightning of the line such as steel towers, conductors, cross­
make changes to a structure built earlier in the nor direct the movements of thunder clouds, but
places must be located so that the line structures transmission line area. arms or insulators. These sounds occur irrespective
are not in the line of fire. The erection of hunting the lines actually increase lightning safety. Since of whether the line is live or not.
towers should be agreed upon in advance with the transmission line towers are usually higher
SOIL EXTRACTION AND DISPOSAL, DITCHING than their immediate environment and since
Fingrid. Game fields can be established on old A permit from Fingrid is required for the extrac-
fields located in rights-of-ways. A permit for clea- they are also grounded, they ”attract” strokes of
tion of gravel, sand, clay, earth and peat in the lightning which would strike in any case in the
ring new fields should be requested from Fingrid. right-of-way. The same applies to ditching and adjacent area.
soil heaps being dumped in a transmission line
ESTABLISHING A ROAD OR OUTDOOR ROUTE
area.
You can jog and ski in a transmission line area. A
permit from the landowner and a statement from It is prohibited to dig ditches in a tower area.
Fingrid are required for the building of a road, The sides of a ditch must never be closer than
outdoor recreation route, jogging track or skiing three metres from the tower and guy structures.
track in a transmission line area. If the depth of a ditch to be dug is more than
half a metre, the underground grounding electro-
USE OF SNOWMOBILES des must be taken into account. Fingrid must
With the landowner’s and Fingrid’s permit, a be informed immediately of broken grounding
transmission line area can be used for snowmobile electrodes.
Projects near transmission
line requiring permit
THESE ARE NEEDED FOR PERMITS AND STATEMENTS:

A map indicating the location of the intended


project and the transmission line.

A layout drawing indicating the exact locati-


on of the project with respect to the transmis-
sion line.

The name, address and telephone number


Some medical devices inserted in the body (such electric phenomenon does not mean that it would of the applicant so that we can obtain additio-
as pacemakers) may malfunction under a transmis- cause a health hazard. nal information if this is necessary.
14 sion line. Disturbance in a pacemaker can be redu- 15
One of the properties of the electric field of a
ced through adjustments and especially through Send the application to the below address:
transmission line is that electrically conductive
the selection of an appropriate pacemaker. Fingrid Oyj
objects which are isolated from the ground and
FM radio transmission (VHF), i.e. the most com- located close to the line – such as metal shovels, Risteämälausunnot
mon broadcast or local radio transmission, is not tools etc. – become electrically charged. Anyone P.O. Box 530
disturbed by transmission lines. working under a line also becomes electrically FI-00101 Helsinki, Finland
charged. Usually, you do not even notice this, but or by e-mail to
A transmission line disturbs the television signal risteamalausunnot@fingrid.fi
when you are wearing footwear with a thick sole,
only in very rare cases. If problems occur, contact
such as rubber boots, you may feel a faint spark
Fingrid’s experts.
when you touch a grounded object, for instance
A hand-held fluorescent lamp may light up under a metallic fence pole. The phenomenon is similar
a transmission line as a result of the electric field to and as harmless as the spark which is created
created by the conductors. The current passing when taking off a sweater made of synthetic fib-
through the lamp is naturally much weaker than res. In the same way, the sparking of an umbrella,
normally. The lamp glows weakly, and the light for instance, under a transmission line is harmless
emitted from it cannot be compared to the light and caused by electric charge.
emitted in the normal use of the lamp. The light
can only be seen when it is dusky. This purely
FINGRID OYJ
Arkadiankatu 23 B, P.O. Box 530, FI-00101 Helsinki, Finland | Tel. +358 (0)30 395 5000 | Telefax +358 (0)30 395 5196 | www.fingrid.fi
Hämeenlinna Network Control Centre | Tel. +358 (0)30 395 4300 (24 h duty)