Stay Clear of Danger

Always assume a downed power line is energized. Downed lines can energize the ground up to 35 feet away.

A downed power line may not be a de-energized line. It could cause serious injury or death.

Assume all power lines are energized and dangerous. De-energized lines could become energized at any time. Never touch a downed power line—and never touch a person or object touching a power line. Follow these tips to stay safe around a downed power line:

  • Immediately report a downed power line to your utility company and call 911.
  • If you see someone who has been shocked and is in direct or indirect contact with a downed power line, do not touch the person. Efforts to pull an electric shock victim away could make you a second victim. Warn others to stay away.
  • If a power line falls across or near your vehicle while you are in it, stay inside until help arrives. If you must exit, jump clear so no part of your body is touching the car when you land. Keep both feet together and shuffle or hop at least 30 feet away from the vehicle.
  • Do not try to move tree limbs located on or near a power line.