MEC Hosts Live Line Demonstration for Emergency Personnel and Telecoms
Macon Electric Cooperative sponsored an electrical safety demonstration on Monday, April 22 for local emergency personnel and local telecommunications organizations (telecoms). Individuals that attended represented various local emergency response groups including Macon Fire Department, Missouri State Highway Patrol, and Randolph County Sheriff’s Department. Telecoms present included Chariton Valley and Mark Twain Telephone.
The presentation was conducted by Steve Hancock, Vice President of Electric Distribution at Corn Belt Energy. Corn Belt’s unique display unit sent the firefighters, police officers, and telecom employees 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. Hancock warned that if you are ever in or come upon 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, or direct those inside to remain inside, 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.
Hancock also 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 communities with a solid foundation for electrical safety knowledge and helps them to be aware of the dangers associated with power lines. MEC was excited to have the opportunity to include telecommunications organizations in this year’s presentation, because those individuals are often working on the poles that carry MEC’s 7200 volts of power. MEC 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.