Storm Damage Repairs: Who Does What?


Tree Trimming and Brush Removal After a Storm

During an outage, ENWIN’s top priority is public safety and restoring power as quickly as possible. Storm damage and other hazardous situations may necessitate the need for ENWIN to trim trees on private property and leave the brush behind so that we can attend to another high priority call. In these cases, tree and/or brush removal is the responsibility of the homeowner. For information about City of Windsor Yard Waste pickup and schedule, please visit the City's website.

Always use caution and avoid entering an area where a downed power line may be present, including anything that may be in contact with the wire such as puddles of water and fences. If you are physically unable to perform the work or have concerns for your safety, we ask that you please call us for assistance at 519-255-2727.

In some cases, entire trees will fall over during a storm. ENWIN will cut away parts of the tree to allow us to access and repair our distribution infrastructure to restore power to our customers. However, removal of the cut limbs and fallen tree is the responsibility of the homeowner.

In large-scale storms, ENWIN may arrange for curbside pick-up to help speed up brush removal.  ENWIN will communicate this to our customers through various media channels when this is the case.

Damaged Electrical Equipment

In general, the customer is responsible for all electrical equipment attached to the home, including stacks and pipes, and the electrical wires they contain. The utility is responsible for the meter and the wires that leave your stack and attach to the power lines.

Be sure to check your outdoor electrical connections after a storm - even if you have not lost power. Severe weather can damage the equipment attached to your home, and neglecting to repair it can pose a risk to you and to the community.

Image of Hydro meter and Stack connected to a house indicating property of homeowner and property of the utility
Diagram courtesy of the Electrical Safety Authority (ESA)

 

Take these simple steps to ensure the safety of your home after a storm:

  • Inspect all electrical masts and pipes. This equipment is yours and needs to be in good condition to safely conduct electricity.
  • If you suspect that your equipment is damaged, call a licensed electrical contractor to make repairs and certify safety. In Ontario, only a Licensed Electrical Contractor can perform this work. Using other service providers may delay the reconnection of your electricity, or lead to insurance issues. There are more than 7,000 Licensed Electrical Contractors in Ontario.
  • Once repairs are complete and certified, call ENWIN to reconnect your power.

For your own safety, you should start this process immediately after a storm has passed, providing that there are no downed lines or other electrical hazards present. For more information visit the Electrical Safety Authority website.

Flood Damageimage of two hydro workers checking a downed pole

Storms can also cause damage to pipes and watermains, leading to basement flooding. Remember that electrical equipment and wiring that has been exposed to water may be dangerous when the power comes back on. Take these steps to ensure your safety:

  • If water levels in your basement rise above electrical outlets, or near your electrical panel, stay out of the basement and call ENWIN. We will disconnect your power so that your electrician can safely make repairs.
  • Ensure that the main power service in the house is turned off until all electrical equipment has been tested and certified as safe.
  • Contact a qualified electrician to inspect and repair electrical equipment, including plugs, wires and electrical appliances that may have been in contact with water.
  • Replace anything that has been damaged by water.
  • Do not plug in our use any appliances that have been wet, unless they are checked by a certified electrician.
  • For more information about electrical safety at home after a flood, visit the Electrical Safety Authority website.