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BC Hydro study finds 56% of neighbours annoyed by one another

Does something your neighbours do rub you the wrong way?

Statistically, they probably feel the same about you.

A new study from BC Hydro says 56% of people find something their neighbours do to be “downright annoying.”

The top neighbour annoyances include noise (65%), parking (34%), not respecting property boundaries (23%), lack of lawn maintenance (16% – 25% in Northern BC), ugly décor (12%) and garbage and recycling issues (12%).

Trimming bushes and hedges is another common concern – 27% of people admitted to taking matters into their own hands and trimming their neighbours’ foliage without their permission.

This is a concern for BC Hydro – they say the most common “backyard electrical incidents” involve tree trimming.

They are “urging the public to make safety around power lines a priority, especially as the weather heats up and British Columbians spend more time outdoors.”

They gave the following advice:

  • To trim or not to trim:  Customers should call a Certified Utility Arborist for any vegetation near transmission or distribution lines, or for vegetation within three metres of the service line to their home. There are several vegetation contractors that can help homeowners to access and safely prune vegetation near BC Hydro wires.How to distinguish a line:
    • Overhead distribution lines consist of wires that are supported by utility poles about 10 metres high. These poles are most often made of wood but are sometimes concrete.
    • Transmission lines carry large quantities of electricity from generating stations to the cities where the electricity is used. Transmission lines are thick and attached to tall steel structures. There are also wooden poles that hold up transmission lines that can sometimes look like the ones that support distribution lines, but they are higher.
    • Service lines are a bundle of electrical wires or cables run from BC Hydro’s power pole to the connection at your house. Because the lines are higher than your home, the cables that go to your home often drop, descending from a higher spot to a lower spot. If your home does not have a service drop, it is supplied by similar cables running underground.
  • Call or click before you dig:  If planting, plan ahead and remember to always call or click BC1 Call at least three days before digging to locate any underground electrical or other infrastructure. Make a request online at or call 604 257 1940 or 1 800 474 6886 outside the Lower Mainland.

For more information, click here.

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