Dealing with a Downed Power Line
October 11, 2019
Coming into contact with a downed power line can provide a path for electricity to the ground, and that could hurt or kill you. You don’t even have to touch a downed line to be in danger. A downed line can energize the ground up to 35 feet away… even farther in wet conditions. Downed lines are most common after storms. If you are outside after a storm, be alert for lines that may be hard to see in streams or puddles. Stay well away from anything touching the line, such as a tree, fence, vehicle, etc.
Don’t try to move a downed power line. Even using items that typically are not conductive can be extremely dangerous.
Never drive over downed power lines or through water that is in contact with them. If your vehicle does contact a power line, call 911 and stay inside until rescue workers say it is safe to leave.
Assume all power lines are energized and dangerous. Downed lines can hurt or kill you, even if they don’t spark, hum, or “dance.” Call FirstEnergy’s Outage Reporting Line, 1-888-LIGHTSS (1-888-544-4877), and select the option to report a downed power line.
Check out this public service message* from the Electrical Safety Foundation International for more on what to do in event of a downed power line.
*By clicking the link in this article, you are entering a website maintained by an outside party, which is entirely responsible for the site’s content.