Preservative-Treated Wood Poles
Engineered by Nature. Enhanced by Technology.

Welcome to the North American Wood Pole Council website. NAWPC is an independent council representing the producers of wood poles and crossarms in North America. The Council is supported by member companies from the Western Wood Preservers Institute, Southern Pressure Treaters' Association and Wood Preservation Canada.


What's New

Pole Best Practices Conference set March 6-7 in Rhode Island

Add to your understanding of wood poles in overhead systems with the 2018 Operational Best Practices for Wood Utility Poles on March 6-7 in Providence, Rhode Island.


Sponsored by EUCI, Brooks Manufacturing and the North American Wood Pole Council, the two-day conference features insight on topics including asset management, especially pertaining to coordination between telecommunication companies and third party attachers, training and recruiting new linemen, as well as their experiences involving natural disaster response.

The program will also provide industry experts insights on how to best manage assets while saving on costs. Key takeaways include:

  • New standards on pole attachments
  • Best practices for recruiting and training new lineman
  • Wood pole manufacturing and service life
  • How to prepare for a disaster
  • Pole inspection methods
  • Future challenges in wood pole disposal

EUCI is authorized by IACET to offer 0.9 CEUs for conference attendees.

NAWPC is offering a 10 percent discount on the registration. Use Discount Code WP18WPC when registering.

Early bird discounts are also available if you register by Feb. 16. The conference will be held at Renaissance Providence Hotel in downtown Providence.

For more information and to register online, visit the EUCI website. Or click here to download a PDF brochure on the conference.


Wood pole design basics guide released

Explore the basics of wood pole structural design in a new, comprehensive guide. The Technical Bulletin, Wood Pole Design Considerations, reviews the structural criteria that must be considered in determining the proper wood pole for specified loading, wind, ice and other conditions.

Authored by a long-time industry engineer, the bulletin provides specific examples for calculating the pole natural resisting moment, bending moment due to wind and wind spans. It details transverse loading of conductors on tangent and small line angle structures.

The guide is a useful resource for new as well as experienced utility engineers who want to understand the many design considerations that should be reviewed to specify the proper class and strength for wood poles in a distribution systems.

Click here to review the Technical Bulletin.


High cost of hiding power lines explored

Hiding power lines underground is significantly more expensive than using overhead systems, potentially costing utility customers millions of dollars. The high cost of going underground and other potential issues with burying lines are explored in a new Technical Bulletin Undergrounding: Hidden Lines, Hidden Costs.

The new bulletin reviews government studies that show moving lines underground cost as much as 10 to 20 times more than overhead systems using utility poles. It also explores the supposed improved reliability of underground systems and the potential safety issues when such systems fail.

Click here to review the Technical Bulletin.


Fallacy of "wood equivalent" poles exposed

The misleading claims that steel, concrete and fiberglass poles can be substituted as "equivalent" to wood poles are explored in a new Technical Bulletin. The bulletin, "Wood Equivalent" Utility Poles and the NESC, details wood's unique structural properties that are recognized in the NESC.

The bulletin notes there is no universally universally applicable “wood equivalent” pole made from steel, prestressed concrete, fiber-reinforced polymer, or other nonwood material because of the differences in relative strengths inherent in poles manufactured of different materials by different methods.

Click here to review the Technical Bulletin.


Learn more about national wood pole standards

Understanding national wood pole standards and how they apply in designing overhead electrical systems are critical for utilities. A new presentation National Wood Poles Standards helps create that understanding with an overview of the standards process and basic wood pole design information. The presentation was developed by Nelson Bingel, chairman of the NESC.

Click here to review the presentation slides.


ANSI standards for wood poles, crossarms revised


National standards defining the minimum specifications for the quality and dimensions of preserved wood utility poles and crossarms have been revised and are now available for purchasing online.

ANSI standards O5.1-2017 for poles and O5.3-2015 for crossarms were revised through the ASC O5 Committee, which is composed of utility companies, manufacturers, government, academia and other general interest members.

Each standard can be purchased from ANSI for $50. The standard is only available as a PDF download; no printed copies are offered. To order, use the following links:

ANSI O5.1-2017 - Wood Poles, Specifications and Dimensions

ANSI O5.3-2015 - Solid Sawn Wood Crossarms and Braces


Top 10 reasons why wood poles are the best choice

The many benefits of preserved wood poles are highlighted in an updated paper, Ten Features Often Overlooked About the Extraordinary Wood Pole.

Compiled into two easy-to-read pages, the paper details why wood poles continue to be the choice for utilities throughout the country. Readers will learn about the proven performance of wood poles and crossarms, the outstanding physical properties and the preserved wood industry's ability to provide thousands of replacement poles after natural disasters such as storms and hurricanes.

Click here to download the Ten Features paper.