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Power lines... whose property?

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  • Power lines... whose property?

    I board my horse at a farm adjacent to the farm where I take lessons. We ride over to the lesson barn for our lessons, which is a fun little trail ride through creeks and fields and woods and so on. The last segment, though, we currently have to go up to a residential street and ride a short way down to the lesson barn's driveway.

    Next to the road, there is a mowed section below the power lines. They've been doing some work on the power lines lately, and I usually ride down that stretch there, because it's mowed and open and off the road itself.

    The other day there was a guy on a riding lawnmower, mowing his yard and the section under the power lines... I normally would have ridden across his yard under the power lines (near the road) but seeing him mowing there, I went up to the road.

    I had assumed that the ground under the power lines was owned by the power company, as it's mowed evenly all the way down the street, and they have no compunction about putting their construction equipment/railroad ties/etc. all through there... but now that I see someone mowing there, and he's got bushes and a mailbox next to the road, I'm questioning whether I was really riding across his property. I don't want to inadvertently trespass... anyone know whether it's technically his land with power lines over it, or the power company's?

    (I know if it's the power company's I'd be trespassing on their property, but I'm more willing to step on their toes than a real human. d; )
    "Remain relentlessly cheerful."

    Graphite/Pastel Portraits

  • #2
    It really depends. Here in NC, usually the power company does not usually own the land, but has an easement on it that allows them to mow/maintain the line. If it's right next to the road, it may be part of the DOT road easement anyway.
    Life doesn't have perfect footing.

    Bloggily entertain yourself with our adventures (and disasters):
    We Are Flying Solo

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    • #3
      So it's power lines running parallel to the road?

      The places I've been, you technically 'own' it out to the middle of the street, but the city/county has a right of way for a certain number of feet.

      It's possible the power lines are in the right of way area. It's also possible that they're on the individual's land, and the power company has an easement to access them. No way to know without asking.
      --
      Wendy
      ... and Patrick

      Comment


      • #4
        I don't think it's that common for the power company to actually own the land. They generally have a right of way or easement agreement with the property owner. Part of the agreement is that they can do whatever they feel is necessary to maintain their lines, including clearing trees and vegetation or temporarily storing materials.

        As a rider (and a land owner with a power line easement), I always assume that a private individual owns the land unless I know for sure it's public.
        ---------------------------

        Comment


        • #5
          I know exactly where she is talking about and the line runs right next to the road. In the winter it is also a snowmobile trail. IME the power company has an easement that allows for maintenance, but the property owner has full use of the land, except for building under the line, including fencing it for pasture or turning it into lawn.

          I always assume the property owner to be the homeowner of the nearest house to that section of the power or gas line.

          Christa

          Who has lived on several farms with pasture under high power lines

          Comment


          • #6
            Here in MD, we're right near big power lines, and there are 'No Trespassing" signs up in the median under the lines, between our and our neighbors' property. The power co. is quite adamant that no one messes with their groundhog hole infested strip We do each mow the power cos. side of our fences, BUT mostly because we have pasture easements granted BY the power co. so we can fence in some of the land and use it.

            They can tell us to bugger off it anytime, however.
            "As a rule we disbelieve all the facts and theories for which we have no use."- William James
            ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

            Proud member of the Wheat Loss Clique.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by SarahandSam View Post
              I board my horse at a farm adjacent to the farm where I take lessons. We ride over to the lesson barn for our lessons, which is a fun little trail ride through creeks and fields and woods and so on. The last segment, though, we currently have to go up to a residential street and ride a short way down to the lesson barn's driveway.

              Next to the road, there is a mowed section below the power lines. They've been doing some work on the power lines lately, and I usually ride down that stretch there, because it's mowed and open and off the road itself.

              The other day there was a guy on a riding lawnmower, mowing his yard and the section under the power lines... I normally would have ridden across his yard under the power lines (near the road) but seeing him mowing there, I went up to the road.

              I had assumed that the ground under the power lines was owned by the power company, as it's mowed evenly all the way down the street, and they have no compunction about putting their construction equipment/railroad ties/etc. all through there... but now that I see someone mowing there, and he's got bushes and a mailbox next to the road, I'm questioning whether I was really riding across his property. I don't want to inadvertently trespass... anyone know whether it's technically his land with power lines over it, or the power company's?

              (I know if it's the power company's I'd be trespassing on their property, but I'm more willing to step on their toes than a real human. d; )

              I would suggest you read this if you are in NC:

              http://activerain.com/blogsview/3400...north-carolina

              If you are not, google something like "(your state) power line easements"

              The way I interpret the NC law is that the owner still owns the land but he has granted access to the area granted in easement to the person who possesses the easement.

              And that the person or entity who has been granted the easement is the only one who can do as he wishes with the area included in the easement.

              Which means that you can ride on it only if the owner allows it.

              As for fencing and pasture land under power lines, in NC the property owner can erect fencing and use the land as he wishes. Both the power companies and the transcontinental gas lines have thousands of fence lines across their easements.

              Since power line tractors, mowers, trucks, etc., are pretty hard on the land, I would doubt that any reasonable person would object to your riding on it.

              Problem is that you will occasionally run into unreasonable people.

              CSSJR

              Comment


              • #8
                Power companies typically have a right of way to cross other peoples land.

                I run people off riding 4-wheelers all the time who say they are just riding under the power lines. I tell them the power company has a right of way to cross my land but they don't.
                www.HistoricHousePreservation.com

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Tom King View Post
                  Power companies typically have a right of way to cross other peoples land.

                  I run people off riding 4-wheelers all the time who say they are just riding under the power lines. I tell them the power company has a right of way to cross my land but they don't.
                  I think you are correct, as outlined in my earlier.

                  However, I would like to make the suggestion that if we are to be allowed to ride our horses over the land of others, we might want to think twice about chasing 4 wheelers off our land.

                  As I always point out, our sport is like sex. If you are going to get a little you have to give a little.

                  My way of dealing with 4 wheelers is thus: I tell them that they are welcome to ride across our farm but that if they see me on a horse they are to go no faster than I can walk. Roar by me once and that will be the last time.

                  Also, no racing, wheelies, dough nut cutting, etc. Ride to go somewhere but not to raise hell.

                  So I do not have any problems and I can say all of that without making some kid go home crying to his mom who just might happen to own a farm that I want to ride across.

                  And now for my sig.

                  Protect your privacy. Replace Google with IXQUICK at www.ixquick.com.


                  If we do not wish to lose our freedom, we must learn to tolerate our
                  neighbor's right to freedom even though he might express that freedom
                  in a manner we consider to be eccentric.
                  ===================================
                  That includes those that ride horses and those that ride 4 wheelers.

                  CSSJR

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I've pylons belonging to National Grid on MY land.

                    Here as a landowner you're paid a disbursement for having pylons on your land.

                    So my land. Their pylons.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I've always been baffled by posts from people who ride under powerlines as far as I can tell assuming the easements are public domain, they're right up there with people who ride up creekbeds thinking that waterways are public domain - navigable waterways, yes, and you'd be swimming your horse or needing a boat, NOT an ATV.

                      It's always the polite thing to never assume, ask permission and be unobtrusive.

                      I have a memory of trailriding out of the ranch we leased my pony, the ranch owners told us we could go down this one road, etc., but when we got there we found a huge No Trespassing sign, this means you, no riders, walkers, no, no, no. We kept going, we had permission, right?

                      Well the guy came out the house and just cussed us and the ranch owner too, scared me half to death and made me cry, got back and the ranch owner said we'll see about THAT, but we never went that way again.
                      Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
                      Incredible Invisible

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Really, if you see a no tresspassing sign, stay off that land, unless you are 100% sure you have permission to go there.

                        Two evenings ago, I was waiting for a hay delivery, so our gate, that sits over a big, bumpy cattleguard and is marked with 6 signs, from private road, no thru way, to no tresspassing, you will be prosecuted, etc. and some idiot came thru anyway and I found them one mile from that entrance, looking around.
                        I called the sheriff, ready to prosecute, but they were having a busy afternoon and told me to let them go.

                        You really don't want people casing the places and some that are "just looking around, I didn't see any signs" are definitively doing just that.
                        I hope I scared them enough to keep them off, at least these ones.

                        Remember, the reason there are so many no tresspassing signs is just because people can't use some common sense and not go where they don't have the right to go.

                        We have power lines and easements for them, but only power line personel checking and doing work on the lines can come in to work on the lines and only thru designated paths.
                        Once we found one of those men running around one of our dams with his motorcycle on his off time and he was fired, it is against company policy to abuse like that the right to enter a place.
                        Last edited by Bluey; Jul. 31, 2010, 07:59 AM.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Thomas_1 View Post
                          I've pylons belonging to National Grid on MY land.

                          Here as a landowner you're paid a disbursement for having pylons on your land.

                          So my land. Their pylons.
                          they do that with telegraph poles to as i have one stuck in my feild

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            An in-state friend of mine owns 85 miles of the land that the local gas pipeline runs down and my brother owns a chunk of property out of state with a gas line in it as well. Both are private property, with easements for power delivery.
                            "The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits." Albert Einstein

                            http://s1098.photobucket.com/albums/...2011%20Photos/

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              OP, best thing to do is ask or call your local power company and explain what you wish to know then see what they say. Or, you can go to the owner you saw and ask him if he is okay with you riding by.

                              As for 4 wheelers, when we put trails up on our land we will not allow them on the trails. I have had way too many issues with idiots here in VA on them and they don't seem to realize when you have a horse jigging, backing up, dancing around, you stop!! Especially when your being yelled at to please stop because the rider is having a hard time....

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by SmokenMirrors View Post
                                OP, best thing to do is ask or call your local power company and explain what you wish to know then see what they say. Or, you can go to the owner you saw and ask him if he is okay with you riding by.

                                As for 4 wheelers, when we put trails up on our land we will not allow them on the trails. I have had way too many issues with idiots here in VA on them and they don't seem to realize when you have a horse jigging, backing up, dancing around, you stop!! Especially when your being yelled at to please stop because the rider is having a hard time....
                                But one day there will be this really nice place you would like to ride and you will find out that the land is owned by some 4-wheeler's grandmother or grandpa; one of the 4-wheelers you ran off.

                                I handle it a different way and have never had a problem. I let them ride, but I set rules and they know I mean it.

                                CSSJR

                                Protect your privacy. Replace Google with IXQUICK at www.ixquick.com.


                                If we do not wish to lose our freedom, we must learn to tolerate our
                                neighbor's right to freedom even though he might express that freedom
                                in a manner we consider to be eccentric.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by cssutton View Post
                                  I think you are correct, as outlined in my earlier.

                                  However, I would like to make the suggestion that if we are to be allowed to ride our horses over the land of others, we might want to think twice about chasing 4 wheelers off our land.

                                  As I always point out, our sport is like sex. If you are going to get a little you have to give a little.

                                  My way of dealing with 4 wheelers is thus: I tell them that they are welcome to ride across our farm but that if they see me on a horse they are to go no faster than I can walk. Roar by me once and that will be the last time.

                                  Also, no racing, wheelies, dough nut cutting, etc. Ride to go somewhere but not to raise hell.

                                  So I do not have any problems and I can say all of that without making some kid go home crying to his mom who just might happen to own a farm that I want to ride across.

                                  And now for my sig.

                                  Protect your privacy. Replace Google with IXQUICK at www.ixquick.com.


                                  If we do not wish to lose our freedom, we must learn to tolerate our
                                  neighbor's right to freedom even though he might express that freedom
                                  in a manner we consider to be eccentric.
                                  ===================================
                                  That includes those that ride horses and those that ride 4 wheelers.

                                  CSSJR
                                  Neighbors right to freedom does not cover their right to use other peoples land.

                                  The people I have trouble with on 4-wheelers are not people who own land I would want to ride on. Anyone with a pit bull on a chain in the yard has kids running all over the country wherever they want on 4-wheelers. They litter and tear up our cross country courses and trails. They sneak in and swim and litter in our rock quarry. I don't want to bother with deciding which ones are okay to disobey the No Trespassing signs and which ones aren't.

                                  Not having a No Trespassing sign doesn't mean it's alright to go onto that land. What signs I have up get torn down frequently. Here it just means that the owner has to warn you the first time. I'm not putting No Trepassing signs on miles of land. My first warning is one to remember.

                                  It hurts my feelings if someone does not respect ownership of land. If you hurt my feelings, I'm going to hurt yours.
                                  www.HistoricHousePreservation.com

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Our power company uses a combination of traversing public land, (which is accessible to us as trail riders and we ride the maintenance trails), some power company owned land (upon which tresspassing is sometimes forbidden-usually for good reason like electrical hazard, and in some places allowed) and negotiated easements through private land, which most landowners have fenced off with locked gates that the Power Co. has keys to, but no one else is allowed.

                                    My SIL has a main power line running along the back of her property, which she has fenced and gated, but until recently, she did not lock it. She is not allowed to build, dig or plant any trees within 50 feet of the line. There is a maintenance trail which runs right through her land that connects to the public trail system and helped people avoid having to go up to the adjoining highway for their walks. She used to allow people to cross her land but she got tired of people on ATV's and dirt bikes leaving her gates open and letting her stock out (I guess they were too lazy to stop and close the gates once they'd entered, just got back on their vehicles and rode on), so now the gates are locked and a large dog roams the place for good measure. She feels a little bad, because it blocks everyone and she said the pedestrians and horse riders were never a problem, but she'd hear the motors of the ATV's and go out to check and frequently found her gates left open swinging.
                                    "The Threat of Internet Ignorance: ... we are witnessing the rise of an age of equestrian disinformation, one where a trusting public can graze on nonsense packaged to look like fact."-LRG-AF

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      "Neighbors right to freedom does not cover their right to use other peoples land"

                                      That is not what I said or inferred.

                                      I contend that one who crosses another's land on a horse and who does not return the favor to all who behave will end up with the reputation of "that snotty guy on a horse".

                                      And that rubs off on all who ride.

                                      If we are going to accept the hospitality of others, we must show some ourselves.

                                      I have had no problem sorting the trouble makers from the decent people.

                                      CSSJr

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        I should have included also that our land doesn't go through to anywhere but the lake. It's a big peninsula. It doesn't go through to anyone elses land but ours. There is a permanent 4-wheeler path up on River Road right on the outside of the ditch that goes for miles. They are welcome to stay up there. I'm not bothering to sort out any of the others that come back in here.

                                        No one comes back in here on a horse.
                                        www.HistoricHousePreservation.com

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