Live Line demonstration held for emergency personnel
Macon Electric Cooperative sponsored an electrical safety demonstration on Tuesday, March 13 for local emergency personnel at the Macon Electric Cooperative office. Individuals that attended represented various local emergency response groups including Macon County Rescue, Northeast R-IV Fire Department, La Plata Fire Department, Atlanta Fire Department, Macon Rural Fire Department, Bynumville Fire Department, Ethel Volunteer Fire Department, Missouri State Highway Patrol, and Macon Fire Department.
The presentation was conducted by Daniel Philips and Don Roach, employees at Access Energy Cooperative in Iowa. Access’ unique display unit sent the firefighters, police officers, and first responders away with a much greater respect for electricity and the dangers associated with it.
The audience was taught how to react safely in emergency situations involving downed power lines. Philips warned that if you are ever in an accident involving a power pole, you should assume electrical lines could be down and energized. The proper action is to stay inside the vehicle until the power company can de-energize the line. Stepping out of the car could create a path to ground and kill a person instantly. The only exception would be if the vehicle was on fire. In that case, the proper action is to jump – not step – with both feet together away from the vehicle, making sure you are NOT touching the vehicle with any part of your body when you land. Because electricity dissipates and the ground may be energized, you should hop with both feet together as you leave the area.
Roach discussed the importance of installing ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs) for all receptacles used in the bathroom, kitchen, shed and outdoors (all places near water). He reminded participants to watch out for overhead power lines, keeping farm equipment, swimming pool cleaning tools, balloons, and other objects clear of electrical lines.
The Live Line Demo provides emergency personnel with a solid foundation for electrical safety knowledge and helps them to be aware of the dangers associated with power lines. Macon Electric Cooperative is pleased to sponsor the Live Line Demonstration program for schools and community groups as well as fire, police and rescue departments. For more information on live line or table top demonstrations, call Macon Electric Cooperative at (660) 385-3157.