BERLIN, CONN. >> Eversource, which provides electricity in Bethany and Milford, reminds property owners to do routine tree maintenance and to consult with a licensed arborist for professional advice. Eversource is a statewide provider of gas and electric service. Connecticut is one of the most forested states in the country, and trees account for more than 40 percent of all power outages. Trees can also do substantial damage to property if they fail. Many parts of the area have had a drought, which further stresses trees that may have also been affected by insect and pest infestations over the last several years, and there is the potential for more trees and limbs falling in the winter storms. Just as Eversource does routine trimming statewide for the safe and reliable delivery of power, property owners can help protect their home and the electric system by routinely trimming the trees that stand near the power lines, but are outside the company\u2019s trim zone. The company recommends customers check outside their home for any trees or shrubs that appear weak or need to be trimmed, and contact a contractor qualified to trim vegetation if the trees are near power lines. Be sure to verify that the contractor is licensed and insured, and complies with all applicable laws, codes, ordinances and\/or permits. The following are safety tips for property owners preparing for tree maintenance: \u2022 Locate the power lines going to your meter and any that may run along the road. \u2022 Never try to trim any vegetation growing on or near overhead power lines. \u2022 Deadwood is a natural hazard on some species of trees. Do a thorough visual inspection of what is above you before starting seasonal chores such as raking leaves and storing lawn furniture. \u2022 Hire an arborist to evaluate your property and offer professional advice and suggestions for maintaining your trees, similar to any other professional tradesperson. \u2022 Check local listings for a contractor qualified and licensed to trim vegetation around power lines. \u2022 When Eversource responds to restore service during storms and bad weather, the company does tree work to clear the power lines so that service may be restored. Property owners should plan for the cleanup and removal of any fallen limbs or trees. For more information about Eversource\u2019s scheduled maintenance trimming and tree trimming, visit Eversource.com.