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Electrical Safety Tips for Outdoor Summer Activities

Electrical Safety Tips for Outdoor Summer Activities

(KANSAS CITY, Kan.) — With summer in full swing individuals and families are spending more time outdoors playing, completing projects around the house, on vacation, etc. To keep you and your family safe this time of year, the Kansas City Board of Public Utilities (BPU) has pulled together several electrical safety tips to keep in mind.

Stay away from downed power lines

Consider all downed or sagging power lines and anything touching them energized and dangerous. If you see a broken or fallen overhead line, assume it is "Live" and call 911 or BPU’s 24/7 Electricity Outage Line at 913-573-9522 at once. Call that same number if a kite, metallic balloon, or model airplane is caught in a power line. Never personally try to retrieve it.

Avoid Lighting Fireworks Near Power Lines

Planning on lighting fireworks this fourth of July? Like climbing trees and flying kites, you never want to light fireworks near power lines. If you have an accident involving a downed power line, call BPU’s 24/7 Electricity Outage Line at 913-573-9522 immediately and never touch any part of the power line.

Never trim trees near power lines

Don't prune near power lines. Trimming trees around power lines should only be performed by trained professionals. If a tree caused an outage or is on a power line, call the Electric Outage Line at 913-573-9522. Trees and limbs must be safely cleared from power lines and poles before power can be restored.

Look up for ladder safety

When using an aluminum ladder, check above for power lines. Aluminum is an exceptionally good conductor of electricity. Take extra care to ensure the ladder does not inadvertently touch or come near a power line.

Always Call 811 Before You Dig

Planting a tree, installing a fence or deck this summer? Whether doing it yourself or hiring a professional, smart digging means calling Kansas One Call (KOC) at 811 before each job to locate and get buried utility lines marked. One easy phone call to 811 gets your underground utility lines marked for free! Homeowners and contractors can prevent damage to underground utilities and prevent service interruptions by calling KOC at least two working days prior to excavating. It’s free, easy, and it’s the law!

Electricity and water don't mix

Keep electrical appliances, tools, and toys away from water, including rain, wet ground, swimming pools, sprinklers, and hoses.

Invest in GFCI Outlets

GFCI outlets can save lives and should be installed anywhere there’s a chance water and electricity will meet. If an electrical device comes into contact with water, a GFCI outlet will instantly trip and prevent electrocution.

Use Outdoor Extension Cords

When you’re purchasing extension cords, make sure you’re purchasing the right ones. Extension cords that are intended for indoor use only should never be used outside. Outdoor extension cords are made to handle elements like water and heat. For more information about electrical safety go to www.BPU.com.

About BPU

BPU’s water department was originally created in 1909, and its electric utility was operational in 1912. The purpose of the utility, then and to this day, is to provide the highest quality electric and water services at the lowest possible cost. Today the publicly owned utility serves approximately 65,000 electric and 53,000 water customers, primarily in Wyandotte County, Kansas. The mission of the utility and its employees is “to focus on the needs of our customers, to improve the quality of life in our community while promoting safe, reliable and sustainable utilities.” BPU’s Web site is www.bpu.com.



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