Amid recent news about wildfire-related blackouts in California, Tucson Electric Power has received some inquiries about our own wildfire preparations.

Representatives of TEP and other state utilities recently met with Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey to share our year-round efforts to reduce the risk that could otherwise threaten public safety, destroy property and cause power outages.

Here are just a few of the ways we’re mitigating fire risk to ensure the reliability of electric service for our customers:

  • Vegetation management: TEP works year-round to trim trees away from power lines in its mostly urban service territory. Vegetation is cleared away from transmission lines and structures on a regular cycle.
  • Routine inspections: We patrol transmission corridors regularly in helicopters to identify equipment in need of repair and trees in need of trimming. Drones are used to identify concerns in hard-to-reach areas.
  • Collaboration: TEP maintains strong relationships with the Bureau of Land Management, the U.S. Forest Service, the Arizona State Land Department, tribal agencies and private landowners to facilitate communication about potential hazards and active wildfires
  • Forecasting: TEP employees review Arizona wildfire forecasts and use multiple state and federal wildfire and emergency management websites to identify potential threats.
  • Emergency response: TEP stations employees at incident command sites to coordinate with firefighting agencies when wildfires burn in close proximity to company resources.

Visit our website for more information about TEP’s wildfire preparedness.