It’s officially fall, which means we’ll soon be trading our sweat bands for sweaters and our bathing suits for boots. Just like falling temperatures and leaves remind us of the changing seasons, our Stop. Look. Live. public safety campaign reminds customers to keep electrical safety on their minds to stay safe this fall.
Here are some precautions you can take to stay safe all season long:
- When cleaning your rain gutters or using any equipment that extends your reach, plan your work, identify where electrical lines are located and stay at least 30 feet away.
- If you are working on a project that requires digging or inserting anything into the ground, call 8-1-1 at least three days before you dig to avoid contacting any underground lines.
- Plug seasonal lights and decorations into outlets that feature Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCIs).
- Avoid building bonfires under power lines. Smoke and heat from bonfires can damage wires and cause arcing and sparking.
- Keep dry leaves away from outdoor lighting, outlets and power cords to avoid a potential fire.
- Never use electric tools in wet areas.
- Consider covering all electrical outlets that won’t be in use this fall with safety covers to prevent shock.
- Make sure cords around the home are not damaged or frayed and are safely positioned away from heat or moisture.
- Be careful not to overuse extension cords while setting up seasonal decorations and lights and be sure to unplug them before going to bed or leaving the house unattended.
- Avoid overloading your circuits while using high-energy devices such as space heaters. Doing so could cause a fire or blow your fuses or breakers.
- Do not place heat-producing appliances near combustibles such as paper, drapes or furniture.
- Gasoline or diesel-powered generators can produce deadly levels of carbon monoxide and should never be operated inside the home or garage. Follow all instructions in the manufacturer’s operating manual and all local building codes to ensure safety.
Stop. Look. Live.
Every year there are preventable injuries and deaths due to accidental contact with electrical equipment. If you are ever unsure whether an activity poses a safety risk, remember to:
- STOP what you’re doing to consider your personal safety before working or playing around power lines or electrical equipment.
- LOOK around for potential hazards and ways you might come into contact with electrical equipment and identify a way to avoid the hazard.
- LIVE, and prevent serious injury or death by taking precautions to avoid accidental contact with electrical equipment. There is nothing more important than your safety.
A variety of safety information for families, contractors, first responders and more is also available at firstenergycorp.com/safety.