Outdoor and Farm Safety.
While electricity helps to improve our quality of life, it can
be harmful if we are not careful. To help us live safe around
electricity, below are a few safety tips for us to remember.
Farm safety is never out of season. Before heading back into the fields, make sure you and your workers are particularly alert to the dangers of working near overhead power lines. Here are a few tips:
- Survey work areas carefully for overhead power lines and utility poles. Keep farm equipment at least 10 feet away from power lines. Keep in mind the minimum 10 foot distance is a 360-degree rule – below, to the sides and above the power lines.
- When moving large equipment or high loads near a power line, always use a spotter to help ensure that contact is not made with the line.
- Avoid raising the arms of planters, cultivators or truck beds near power lines.
- Overhead electric wires aren’t the only electrical contact that can result in a serious incident. Pole guy wires are grounded to the neutral; but, when one of the guy wires is broken, it can cause an electrical current disruption. This can make those neutral wires anything but harmless. If you hit a guy wire and break it, call Altamaha EMC immediately.
- Operators of farm machinery or moving equipment should know what to do if the vehicle comes in contact with a power line. It’s almost always best to stay in the cab and call for help.
- Warn others who may be nearby to stay away and wait until the electric company arrives to make sure power to the line is cut off.
- If the power line is energized and you step outside, your body becomes the path to the ground and electrocution is the result. Even if a power line has landed on the ground, there is still the potential for the area nearby to be energized.
- Stay inside the vehicle unless there’s fire or imminent risk of fire. In that case, the proper action is to jump – not step – with both feet hitting the ground at the same time.
- Do not allow any part of your body to touch the equipment and the ground at the same time. Continue to shuffle or hop to safety, keeping both feet together as you leave the area. Once you get away from the equipment, never attempt to get back on or even touch the equipment.
More Safety Tips:
Accidental contact with electricity usually results in serious life threatening injuries, even death. Such occurrences can be minimized if the following precautions are taken when working near power lines:
- Assume all overhead and downed power lines are live and dangerous.
- Keep objects at least 10 feet away from power lines.
- Inspect surroundings before operating equipment to avoid interference with power lines.
- Do not attempt to raise or move power lines.
- Report any damaged electrical equipment or downed lines to Altamaha EMC immediately.
- If you plan to dig, call the Utility Protection Center at 811 a few days in advance of your scheduled dig to allow time for the request to be processed.
- Never fly kites or model airplanes near electric power lines.
- Do not climb trees with power lines in or near the branches.
- Avoid areas where warning signs around electrical equipment have been posted.
- Stay away from damaged or broken utility poles with electrical wires. Do not shoot at insulators or power lines.