Hurricane Michael knocked down miles of power lines throughout the hard-hit areas of its path.
They are hard for the public to avoid. In the days since the storm, many people have grown accustomed to stepping on, driving over and even touching these de-energized lines.
This is an extremely dangerous practice, especially as power is restored. Now is the time to be more vigilant of these lines as power is restored.
It’s critical that everyone — our customers, workers, the public — adhere to the safety tips concerning downed lines to avoid being shocked or electrocuted:
- Treat any downed wire as if it is energized because you can’t tell by looking if a downed wire is live or not. Avoid anything a downed line is touching.
- Telephone or cable television wires that are touching a power line could become energized and should also be avoided.
- Downed lines can energize anything metal, including flashing, sheds, awnings and chain link fences. Trees can also be energized.
- Stay clear of areas where there is a lot of debris or downed trees because it could conceal an energized power line. Be careful when cleaning up yard debris or trimming trees.
- Standing water (puddles from flooding and rain) may be energized from a downed line. Be careful not to touch or step in water near where a downed power line is located. If a downed line is near water — even a small puddle — stay well away.
- Don’t attempt to remove or repair the electrical system or pull tree limbs off lines. Let our trained work crews perform this potentially dangerous work.
Removing the downed lines and other electrical equipment is part of the power restoration process and we thank our customers for having patience as our crews work through the community collecting it.
However, after power is restored and you feel a line is posting a threat, arcing or sparking, call our Customer Care Center at 1-800-225-5797.