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Safety Tips

After the winter, it's natural to look forward to the time when we can work and play outdoors. But please remember to think about electrical safety when planning those cleanup, fix-up, and remodeling projects.

Keep clear of power lines. When power lines are nearby, use wooden or fiberglass ladders near metal. Never place a ladder where it can fall into a power line. Carry ladders or long handled tools low enough to avoid coming into contact with overhead lines. Don't install an antenna where it might fall and hit a power line. Keep children's swing sets and tree houses away from power lines.

Check out your equipment. Keep all electrical appliances a safe distance away from water and don't use power tools when standing in wet areas. Never use an electric mower when the grass is wet. Power tools should be properly grounded, and use only heavy-duty extension cords rated for outdoor use. Make sure outdoor electrical outlets are grounded and have weather proof covers.

Landscape with care. Call us before you dig. We can tell you the location of any underground lines. Don't plant tall-growing trees under power lines. If you have a tree with power lines running through it, don't climb it or build anything in it. Call us if the tree needs trimming. Keep bushy shrubs away from you meter.

Avoid substations and transformers. Instruct your children to stay away from utility substation fences and pad-mounted transformers. If you see a substation fence or transformer cabinet that has been vandalized, call us immediately. Teach children to look for DANGER signs displayed on all high voltage equipment.

Leave downed power lines alone. If you come across a downed power line, call us immediately. DO NOT GO NEAR IT. If a power line falls on your car, stay inside unless the car catches fire. In such a case, jump clear of the car without touching metal and the ground at the same time. If someone comes in contact with a live outdoor power line, the only safe thing to do is call us immediately so the power can be turned off. NEVER ATTEMPT TO MOVE THE VICTIM OR THE POWER LINE.

Here are some outage and storm tips:

1. While you are waiting for HMLP crews to arrive, turn off all appliances that turn on automatically when power is restored, including refrigerators, televisions, water pumps and furnaces. Leave one light on so you will know when the power is back on. Once power has been restored, gradually reconnect appliances and reset clocks and timers.

2. Unplug all unnecessary appliances and electric equipment such as stereos, TVs and computers.

3. Avoid opening your refrigerator or freezer (your food should stay fresh for at least 24 hours if the door is seldom opened).

4. To help prepare your family for power outages caused by storms, make sure you have the following available:

  • Flashlight and batteries
  • Battery-powered radio
  • Candles and matches
  • Extra food and water
  • First aid supplies and medicine
  • Fire extinguisher

5. Do not plug a backup generator into an outlet in your home without first disconnecting from our system. If you don't, the power from your generator will flow backwards into our distribution system and may seriously injure or kill our linemen.

6. Do not burn charcoal for heat—it gives off dangerous fumes. In addition, a fireplace may pull more warm air from a house than it gives out.

7. Stay tuned to a local radio station for important information about outages.

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