Seattle City Light is a partner in the regional Take Winter By Storm campaign to improve our community’s preparedness for winter weather and the challenges it can present.
One of those challenges is high wind, which can knock down branches or trees, taking out power lines and causing outages.
Our lineworkers work hard to restore power after storms. They’re ready to go. We want you to be ready for storm season too. Part of being ready is understanding the potential danger from downed power lines.
We recently got together with Tacoma Power, Snohomish PUD and Puget Sound Energy to demonstrate how energy moves away from a live downed wire and what you need to do to stay safe. You can watch a video of that demonstration here.
For your safety:
- Always treat any downed power line you see as a live wire.
- Stay far away and call your utility or 9-1-1 to report the wire so crews can make it safe and make repairs.
- If you find yourself too close to a downed power line, shuffle your feet away from the line to a safe location. Do not walk or run away from the line – doing so can cause one foot to be at one voltage and another foot at another voltage, which can cause electric shock.
- Do not drive over downed power lines. Should a power line fall on your car when you’re driving, slowly continue to move completely clear of it.
- If you can’t move your car away from the power line, stay in the car until help arrives.
- If you must leave your car because of fire or other danger, jump away from the vehicle so that you do not touch the vehicle and the ground at the same time. Land with your feet together and shuffle your feet away from the line to a safe location.
You can get more tips for winter weather preparedness, including what to put in your three-day emergency kit at www.takewinterbystorm.org .