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Committee O5 is accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and develops standards for utility poles, crossarms, and wood bracing used by electric and communications utilities.


Standardization of dimensional classifications, defect descriptions and limitations, manufacturing practices, fiber stresses and quality assurance procedures for wood poles and other wood products used in the construction of electric supply and communication lines.

Brief History

Committee O5 on Specifications and Dimensions for Wood Poles was organized in 1924 by the Bell Telephone System and the U.S. Independent Telephone Association's American Standards Associations (ASA) Telephone Group. Secretariat responsibilities were accepted by the American Wood Protection Association in 2011.

This Committee creates standards for wood poles, crossarms and braces, and glue laminated timber for utility structures. Wood poles continue to be the most cost-effective method to provide electric power and telecommunications services to rural areas of the United States. Today, there are approximately 100 million wood poles in service throughout the United States.


Effective January 1, 2011, the American Wood Protection Association (AWPA) assumed the role of ASC O5 Secretariat.  For more information about AWPA and its activities, please visit the AWPA Website.