What is a service line?

In simple terms, a service line is a power line that carries electricity between the network lines owned by Northpower and a consumer’s house or installation. Service lines can be overhead or underground.

House Connections

Note: the change of ownership occurs on the property boundary, where the line changes from green to blue

Northpower owned network line
Property owner / consumer owned service line

Who owns service lines and what are the responsibilities?

As a general rule, a property owner/consumer will own a service line from the point where it enters private property. For most, this is where the electricity service line leaves the public road and enters private property. Many owners/consumers do not realise they are responsible for power lines and poles which supply electricity to their property. Inside private property boundaries, owners/consumers are legally responsible for the safety and maintenance of their electrical installation; this includes any overhead or underground service lines, not just the wiring inside a building. The only exceptions to this rule are Northpower owned meters, relays and transformers on private property.  Some people share service lines with neighbours, and in this case the responsibility for maintenance and safety is shared also. While these descriptions apply to a large majority of cases, there are some where it is more difficult for owners/consumers to determine the exact demarcation point. If this sounds like you give us a call, we will be happy to help you determine this detail.

Unsafe service lines

Northpower carries out regular safety inspections on our network. If unsafe service lines are identified in this process Northpower is obliged to notify the owner/consume of the state of the lines and of what work is required to make them safe. Northpower will then follow up with the individual responsible to ensure the required work has been completed.  If the unsafe service line is shared Northpower will make contact with all affected owners /consumers . The ownership of the shared service line can be changed if all parties agree. As a result of the change responsibilities regarding maintenance and safety becomes Northpowers. Once ownership has been changed, each person must take responsibility where the service line becomes solely for their own supply.

Remember to keep an eye out for things that don't look safe and be sure to deal to them before they get worse, not to mention dangerous and expensive.