Power safety warning during flood clean-up
As the huge clean up progresses along the River Murray, SA Power Networks has issued a strong warning about the potentially fatal risk associated with contacting or getting too close to electrical infrastructure.
We are reminding community members and industry – including the waste management, demolition and construction sectors – of the risk of working around energised powerlines.
“In these situations, electrical risks are not always top of mind, but the reality is we have re-energised the network along the River and touching or getting too close to powerlines could be potentially fatal,” said Paul Roberts, Head of Corporate Affairs.
“We urge property owners to engage a qualified electrician to undertake a safety check of all electrical wiring and carry out any repair works that are needed. It is illegal to do this work yourself and may put others in danger,” he said.
“And people operating large vehicles and machinery and undertaking demolition or construction work need to be mindful of the proximity of powerlines.
“Our concern is there will be pressure for work to be done quickly and that it may potentially be undertaken by inexperienced operators,” Mr Roberts said.
The specific industry risks are:
- getting too close to or contacting overhead powerlines while undertaking work (trucks including tip trucks, cranes, forklifts, erecting scaffolding etc)
- digging up underground powerlines (Visit Before You Dig for location of powerlines)
- some operators moving, connecting or disconnecting electrical equipment when they are not qualified or certified and do not have confirmation the equipment is de-energised.
The State Government Office of the Technical Regulator (OTR) has information about working safely near overhead powerlines.
“We advise property owners that they should take every precaution in visiting their properties and that they do not interfere with electrical infrastructure of any kind until we have visited and they have received confirmation that it is safe either from us or their electrician,” Mr Roberts said.
See more Murray Flood information