Life Saving Commitment #11: Overhead Power Lines
Protect against contact with overhead power lines
Overhead electrical lines at your site are especially hazardous because they carry extremely high voltage. Fatal electrocution is the main risk, but severe burns and damage to equipment is also possible. The use of tools or equipment in the vicinity of overhead power lines increases the risk of an incident.
Protective measures, such as shutting off the power or insulating the lines should be utilized if possible. Warning signs should be erected to notify equipment operators of the presence of power lines.
- Look for the presence of overhead power lines in your work area
- Assume that all overhead power lines are energized at lethal voltages
- Stay at least 10 feet away from overhead power lines. If working at heights, handling long objects or operating equipment, make sure that your work activities are at a safe distance from power lines
- Confirm with the Supervisor or Person in charge of the work that it is safe to start work if power lines are present
If you are the Supervisor or the person in charge of the work you should:
- Survey the work area for the presence of overhead power lines
- Take protective measures such as having the power shut off or having the lines insulated, if possible
- Install warning signs if there is the potential for equipment or vehicles to come in contact with the power lines
- Confirm that all employees are aware of the presence of overhead power lines and that they understand the hazards
- Confirm that it is safe to start work