26 September 2023

Electrical accidents spark concern

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Energex has expressed concern over a spate of potentially deadly incidents involving vehicles and machinery hitting electrical assets.

Community Safety Manager for the utility, Aaron Smith said that this year there had already been 350 contacts with power poles, pillar boxes and lines, including motor vehicle crashes and live wires left exposed after grass slashers ripped open pillar boxes.

“There have been live lines brought down across cars, trucks and tractors, as well as dangerous instances of damage to pillar boxes from machinery and vehicles,” Mr Smith said.

“Any one of these situations could have resulted in further tragedy. Thankfully, in most of these cases, the people in these vehicles knew to call 000 and stay put until we could safely de-energise the lines so emergency responders could come to the rescue.”

He said that after an accident, the safest place was almost always inside the vehicle, as there was a probability the outside could be live.

“In the unlikely event that a vehicle catches fire, jump from it being very careful not to touch the car and ground at the same time, then hop or shuffle away for at least 10 metres making sure that both feet remain together and in contact with the ground at all times,” Mr Smith said.

He said bystanders also needed to be extremely cautious about how they helped at a crash scene.

“If there’s any possibility electrical equipment is involved, stay at least 10 metres away — it’s not just the vehicle that can be live, but also the ground around it,” Mr Smith said.

“Call 000 and our crews and emergency personnel will be there ASAP,” he said.

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