The Electrical Safety Authority Reminds Ontarians About Powerline Risks
MISSISSAUGA, ON, Aug. 21, 2012 /CNW/ - When a crane accident caused hydro lines to be knocked down onto a Toronto Transit Commission bus yesterday, the driver's quick-thinking response to keep passengers calm and onboard the vehicle may well have saved their lives. The Electrical Safety Authority commends the driver and reminds all Ontarians of the fundamentals of safety around downed or damaged powerlines.
- If powerlines have been knocked down or damaged due to storms, accidents or other factors you must always assume they are live and stay at least 10 metres (33ft) away regardless of the voltage. Touching or even coming near a downed live powerline can be lethal. Contact 911 and your local electrical utility immediately and keep everyone well clear of the area
- If a powerline lands on or near your car, truck, bus, or construction vehicle, stay in your vehicle:
- If you attempt to exit and make contact with the ground while touching the vehicle, you can be seriously injured or killed. Electricity seeks the easiest and shortest path to the ground - when people or objects come too close to, or touch an electrical wire, they can become a part of an electrical circuit which can result in an instant flow of electricity through them to ground.
- If others approach to try and help you, tell them not to touch the vehicle and stay well back at least 10 metres (33ft).
- Contact 911 and the local utility and wait to be directed by emergency personnel.
- Only the local electrical utility can ensure the power is disconnected and safe to approach.
- In the case where it is not safe to stay in the vehicle, such as due to fire to the vehicle, the only way to safely exit is to jump away so that no part of you touches the vehicle and ground at the same time. Land with both feet together, then shuffle away keeping both feet as close together as possible to a distance of 10m (33ft).
The flow of electricity through the human body can kill - less than one ampere of electricity can burn, severely injure or cause death. Electricity can conduct through many materials - including metal, pavement, water, trees, ropes, steel belted tires, and the human body itself. Electricity is fast - travelling at approximately 299,330 km per second. That leaves no room for mistakes - never put yourself into electricity's path.
For more information on electrical safety, go to www.esasafe.com.
The Electrical Safety Authority
The Electrical Safety Authority's (ESA) role is to enhance public electrical safety in Ontario. As a delegated administrative authority acting on behalf of the Government of Ontario, ESA is responsible for administering specific regulations related to the Ontario Electrical Safety Code, the licensing of Electrical Contractors and Master Electricians, electricity distribution system safety, and electrical products safety. ESA works extensively with stakeholders throughout the province to educate, train, promote, and foster electrical safety.
SOURCE: Electrical Safety Authority
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