Working near Electricity

If you work near power lines, you should know:

As of January 1st, Alabama State Law requires unqualified workers to be at least ten feet away from energized conductors. Unqualified workers means non-utility personnel.; so if you don’t work for a power company, you need to be at least ten feet away. The previous law required six feet of clearance, but the amended law requires ten feet and there are criminal penalties for anyone who violates this clearance by working or operating a piece of equipment within the required clearance. If work is required within this clearance, certain steps need to be taken, such as de-energizing/grounding the line or relocating the line. Please note that Alabama State Law applies to Alabama employers and all others (including homeowners) working near overhead lines of 750 volts or more. Read more about this new law. 




Safety Tips Near Power Lines

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Contact with overhead power lines is the most common type of electrocution. Always be aware of your surroundings, especially when working outdoors. Whether you’re at a jobsite or working at home, take a few minutes to look up, look down and look around. Know where all power lines are located.
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Don’t set up your worksite anywhere near or around power lines.
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Don’t park a dump truck directly under a power line.
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When installing a satellite dish, place it as far away from your service entrance wires as possible.
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When hauling a large load, be sure it clears power lines.
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When sailing, make sure the mast or any other part of the sailboat won’t come close to power lines.
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Be aware that any object you’re holding that gets close to or touches a power line, can create a path to the ground for electricity: You’ll be part of that path and can be shocked or worse.
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Always maintain proper working distances from overhead lines.




Additional Safety Tips

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Never use electrical equipment in wet conditions. Anything can conduct electricity –even a wooden ladder can soak up water and be dangerous.
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Stay away from all transformers. Underground transformers are in big green boxes and should always be locked. If you see one with a broken lock, immediately call 911 or Alabama Power at 1-800-888-2726.


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