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Friday 22 Aug 2014

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Back-to-School Safety

DMEA, Tri-State and Safe Electricity Encourage Watchfulness as Kids Go Back to School

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To emphasize the importance of safety as kids are returning to school, this year's Youth Appreciation Day (YAD) featured DMEA's high-voltage safty demonstration and Tri-State's new spokes-robot, named "Power."  SafeElectricity.org also has many online tools to help parents and students keep safety in mind during this time of transition.

When your mind is on other things, it’s easy to overlook basic safety concerns. Things we see everyday can almost fade from view. In fact, recent studies have found that people’s minds likely ignore power lines because they have seen them so often they don’t even notice them anymore. But failure to notice high voltage power lines can be a deadly oversight. Delta-Montrose Electric Association (DMEA) and SafeElectricity.org want to raise awareness about the dangers and precautions to take around power lines.

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, hundreds of consumer deaths occur each year from direct or indirect contact with power lines. Electrocution is also the second leading cause of death for utility and construction workers according to the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health. With so many people distracted at this time of year, DMEA wants to emphasize the importance of electrical safety.

“Often when we undertake outdoor activities, we don’t even think about power lines,” Molly Hall, executive director of Safe Electricity said. “Taking a few moments to become aware of your surroundings is a critical step to keeping yourself and your loved ones safe.”

Safe Electricity encourages everyone to follow these guidelines as they prepare to work outdoors this year:

  • • Look up and around you. Always be aware of the location of power lines, particularly when using long tools like ladders, pool skimmers and pruning poles. Lower your long equipment when you are moving it. Carry ladders and other long items horizontally whenever possible.
  • • Be careful when working on or around your roof, installing rooftop antennas and satellite dishes, doing roof repair work or cleaning gutters. Never go up on the roof in windy or bad weather.
  • • Be especially careful when working near power lines attached to your house. Keep equipment and yourself at least 10 feet from lines.
  • • Never trim trees near power lines – leave that to the professionals. Never use water or blower extensions to clean gutters near electric lines. Contact a professional maintenance contractor.
  • • Never climb trees near power lines. Even if the power lines aren't touching the tree, they could touch when more weight is added to the branch.
  • • If your projects include digging, like building a deck or planting a tree, call your local underground utility locator before you begin. Never assume the location or depth of underground utility lines. This service is free, prevents the inconvenience of having utilities interrupted, and can help you avoid serious injury.

 

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