It is important to be aware of potential hazards around us when using electrical equipment or working near power lines outdoors. There are a lot of chores we perform outdoor; whatever chore you are doing it is important to remember that you are surrounded by electricity and that outdoor electrical safety shouldn’t be overlooked. We often forget to take safety precautions. If you see a downed power line, always assume it is live or dangerous. Do not always assume low hanging wires are deenergized and dry clothes on them, they could still be live too and can lead to electric shocks. Electricity can be a threat outside the home too.
Some outdoor activities can put you in close proximity to overhead power lines. Here are some safety precautions to take to prevent the risk of electric shock:
- Take precautions to keep ladders away and far from power lines when using one.
- It is more suitable to install your satellite dish at the opposite end of your house, as far away as possible from power lines.
- New wiring and wiring need to be done by a licensed professional electrician.
- All outside outlets near a water source should be protected with Ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI).
- Never use electrical wires tools when they are wet or damp.
- If a wire should fall on your vehicle to stay put and wait for help. If you need to make an emergency escape, jump clear of the vehicle without touching the ground and the vehicle at the same time. Then, don’t run: shuffle away to avoid moving from an energized area to one that isn’t.
- Don’t throw water at an electrical fire. It is not the right thing to do during a fire. Water and electricity do not mix. Throwing water can escalate the fire the more. At the initial stage of the fire, use a fire extinguisher instead and call the fire service.
- Wear rubber-soled shoes and shoes when using electrical appliances outdoor near a water source.
- Don’t staple extension cords in place or run them over nails because the cord can easily be damaged.
- Do not use any appliance or touch any an electric cord while you are touching metal pipes or faucets or anything wet.
- Overhead power lines carry immense voltages, and when the necessary care is not taken hazards occur. Have trees touching power lines trimmed off and preferably plant low-growing vegetation in such locations.
- Ensure your kids do not climb trees near overhead power lines.
Note: The best way to prevent dangers is by taking precautionary measures. Remember not to attempt any electrical work yourself that can lead to electrocution or fires. Have a licensed professional do the work for you. Replace your old fuses with switch-type circuit breakers. Test your safety switches every three months at least to ensure they are in good working condition. Install safety switches like Residual current devices (RCD), they cut power flow preventing electrocution.