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Timothy Voyles

Hitting a power line off the tee box, what do I do?

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Played Timber Links in Denton, TX yesterday. It's a 9 hole (we played 18) and on #7 there are several power lines crossing the fairway. It just so happens that I hit them, on BOTH drives. I was using my 12* 3 wood, there's a small creek that runs across about 250 out and I've played driver into it before.

My first time through the lines knocked me down and I was about 50-60 yards past them. Second time around it clips one and the balls get sent straight left OB.

My question is : What's the official ruling for something like this? I asked the proshop guy at the turn how I should have played it for scoring purposes, but he didn't inspire much confidence when he said "just play another and go from there".

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Originally Posted by Timothy Voyles

Played Timber Links in Denton, TX yesterday. It's a 9 hole (we played 18) and on #7 there are several power lines crossing the fairway. It just so happens that I hit them, on BOTH drives. I was using my 12* 3 wood, there's a small creek that runs across about 250 out and I've played driver into it before.

My first time through the lines knocked me down and I was about 50-60 yards past them. Second time around it clips one and the balls get sent straight left OB.

My question is: What's the official ruling for something like this? I asked the proshop guy at the turn how I should have played it for scoring purposes, but he didn't inspire much confidence when he said "just play another and go from there".

Did you check the score card for a local rule? Everywhere I've played where power lines may interfere with a shot there is a local rule, normally it says you must replay your shot if it hits the power lines.

If there's no local rule then I think it's rub of the green and you just have to go find it and play it.

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Originally Posted by Mordan

Did you check the score card for a local rule? Everywhere I've played where power lines may interfere with a shot there is a local rule, normally it says you must replay your shot if it hits the power lines.

If there's no local rule then I think it's rub of the green and you just have to go find it and play it.

Agree, unless there is mention of it on the score card, I believe you just play it as it lies.

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Nothing on the score card. Unless you get a straight knockdown like I did on the first 9 there is no, go find it and play it. There is dense trees running the whole right side, thick enough underbrush to not be able to walk through. The left side is lined with barbed wire and heads onto private property.

Here is a pic of the hole in question: The black scratch lines are the lines I have great been at hitting.....

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Should be a local rule.   If there is nothing on the card, then I'd check with the pro shop.  If no rule, then you play the ball as it lies, but that would be most unusual.  I've played several courses with power lines in play, and they have all had the local rule in effect.  By the way, if you find that to be the case, then replaying the shot is mandatory.  By rule the shot is cancelled and must be replayed.

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Originally Posted by Fourputt

Should be a local rule.   If there is nothing on the card, then I'd check with the pro shop.  If no rule, then you play the ball as it lies, but that would be most unusual.  I've played several courses with power lines in play, and they have all had the local rule in effect.  By the way, if you find that to be the case, then replaying the shot is mandatory.  By rule the shot is cancelled and must be replayed.

I spoke to the guy in the proshop, he said rehit and on the second 9 that's what I did...

He's new to the course, I've not seen him this year or last before. This was just a fun time round practice for me anyway, had 3 friends there who've never played this course and only play 5 or so times a year. No money involved just a good time.

The hitting of the lines just sparked interest for me in case it was an issue later on is all. Pretty much I get it's just look on card for the course rule. No one has mentioned any usga official stance on this yet...

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Originally Posted by Timothy Voyles

I spoke to the guy in the proshop, he said rehit and on the second 9 that's what I did...

He's new to the course, I've not seen him this year or last before. This was just a fun time round practice for me anyway, had 3 friends there who've never played this course and only play 5 or so times a year. No money involved just a good time.

The hitting of the lines just sparked interest for me in case it was an issue later on is all. Pretty much I get it's just look on card for the course rule. No one has mentioned any usga official stance on this yet...

SPARKED some interest....i see what you did there

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Originally Posted by MackJL06

SPARKED some interest....i see what you did there

i try lol...

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Originally Posted by Timothy Voyles

Pretty much I get it's just look on card for the course rule. No one has mentioned any usga official stance on this yet...

Hi Tim,

The replies you have been given are the USGA rules.  The powerlines are an outside agency.  If your ball is deflected by them it's "rub of the green",  which is a USGA term by the way.  You play the ball as it lies.  If it's OB, you must treat it as a ball OB.  Rule 19-1

The USGA recommends a local rule when a golf course has a situation like you described.  The local rule will require a mandatory replay of your stroke.

33-8/13

Local Rule for Ball Deflected by Power Line

Q. An overhead power line is so situated that it interferes with the play of a hole. Would it be appropriate for the Committee to make a Local Rule allowing a player whose ball is deflected by this power line the option to replay the stroke, without penalty, if he wishes ?

A. No. However, a Local Rule requiring a player to replay the stroke would be acceptable. The following text is suggested:

"If a ball strikes the power line during play of the ____ hole, the stroke is canceled and the player must play a ball as nearly as possible at the spot from which the original ball was played in accordance with Rule 20-5 (Making Next Stroke from Where Previous Stroke Made)."

In some cases the Committee may wish to include in the Local Rule the towers or poles supporting such lines when the towers or poles are positioned such that they interfere with the play of the hole.

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If there are no local rule on the power lines, they should put one down right away. On every course with overhanging power lines where I've played, they have had a local rule on it.
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Never heard "rub of the green" term before, wasn't sure what it meant lol

Cool, so play as it as it is for this course then... Have to just beware what club will fly through them at each box location I guess.

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Originally Posted by Mordan

Did you check the score card for a local rule? Everywhere I've played where power lines may interfere with a shot there is a local rule, normally it says you must replay your shot if it hits the power lines.

If there's no local rule then I think it's rub of the green and you just have to go find it and play it.

Yup, I've played a few courses like this, and they all have the exact same rule.  It's an automatic do-over ... even if you liked the result.  No option.

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Originally Posted by Timothy Voyles

Never heard "rub of the green" term before, wasn't sure what it meant lol

Trust me, you're not alone.  Rub of the green just means you take the results, which could be good, or bad.  Say your ball is heading OB, but strikes a mower and deflects back into the fairway.  Rub of the green was kind to you in that case.

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Hah well... I never got a favorable placement at all.

First ball hits and was knocked down about 50-60 yards in the fairway, I proceeded with this ball but since I was so far out I went 3w again... and pushed it to the left OB.

Second time around I hit the lines and it shot me straight left and OB, I dropped to a 3h and hit again. This shot was a good one considering I it left me about 25-40 yards short of where a decent 3w could have went.

No matter which time around it was an ugly hole for me, I would have carded a 7 or 8 on either pass if we were scoring the round. The first play through I'd have had to hit again by the rules and wouldn't have went OB on the second shot lol. Either way I look at it, it's a nasty unforgiving little hole. I can't wait to make a run out there again and see how I come through it. Rough look back at the course I was around 46-52 on each 9, brutal little course!

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Originally Posted by Snowgolf

IIRC  Ball hitting power line means stroke must be cancelled and replayed no penalty.


Did you even read the preceding posts?

That's only true if there is a local rule that says that, which there nearly always is. Otherwise it's play it as it lies.

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I had this situation come up a couple days ago, and wanted to refer back to this thread, which is where I got the ruling from.

I missed my 2nd shot to the green pretty far right on a hole, and it was behind some bushes and trees and there were power lines run parallel to the cart path, which I had to go over. I hit a nice shot, which cleared all the trees and bushes and then clipped the power line, which popped it straight up and it ended up about 20ft off the green.

I was happy with the shot considering the much worse outcomes that could have happened from where I was, but one partner kept insisting that since I hit the powerline, I MUST replay the shot and had no choice.

I called up the Pro after seeing this thread and asked if there was a local rule that covered powerlines.  He told me that the powerlines are laid out so that they don't interfere with normal play (which is true, I was where I shouldn't have been) so they are to be played as obstructions like the trees beside them.  There is no local rule because they will not effect an otherwise good shot.  You have to be in trouble already for them to come into play, so you get nothing.

Finished out the hole with a bogey and was happy.  I was more happy that because of you guys, I knew what the answer should be and how to ask the question to the pro for the ruling.

You're all making me look smarter on the course.

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if its not on the card but the club pro and staff(all long tenured) say that the rule is in effect..whats the play? Is a local rule only in effect if its on a card?

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