Be Safe Be Sound

Steer Clear

Power lines are built up high or buried deep down to keep them away from us. But when disaster strikes, knowledge is the key to safety. If a power line touches your car as a result of an accident, Do Not Get Out.

  • Drive away from the power lines and call for help.
  • If you can’t drive away, stay in the vehicle and call for help.
  • If you can’t stay inside the vehicle, exit without touching the ground and the vehicle at the same time (by jumping). Then shuffle (or hop) away and call for help.

Step Potential

When moving away from downed power lines, keep both feet together, rather than taking steps. This minimizes the chance of electricity flowing from one leg, through your body and back to the ground.

Fight the urge to run, and warn others not to run or approach. This is because when a live wire touches the ground, electricity travels through the ground in all directions. Voltage decreases as it travels away from the center, where the live wire is touching the ground. If you run or take large steps, you could have a difference in voltage from one foot to the other, resulting in a dangerous shock.

1) Voltage Decreases as you move away from the point of contact. 2) Keep feet close together to minimize potential voltage difference. Large steps are dangerous. Voltage difference between feet is high. Shuffling steps are safer. Voltage difference between feet is low.