Look Up, Look Out
Powerlines are part of our landscape and sometimes it’s easy to forget they’re there. Coming into contact with powerlines can result in serious injury or even death. That’s why if you’re working, driving or doing anything close to powerlines, you need to Look Up, Look Out.
Stay safe – follow these rules:
- Check the location of all powerlines before you start work
- Know the exact height of your vehicle and equipment – especially when your tray or excavator is fully raised or extended
- Always use an observer to monitor your clearances
- Never attempt to climb or throw objects at transmission towers – this can put you at risk of electrocution
- Never allow anyone to ride on a high load, especially when travelling underneath powerlines
- Irrigation pipes being moved near powerlines should be kept below head level to avoid any possible contact with overhead powerlines
- Keep jets of water from travelling irrigators clear of overhead powerlines as they can cause the powerlines to touch and could result in a loss of power supply, system disturbances or even a fire
- Never store or locate irrigation pipes, plant, machinery or any other potentially conductive material under powerlines
Repairing damaged electrical infrastructure is a costly exercise for us and we may recover costs from individuals or businesses responsible for any damage to infrastructure as a result of encroaching the minimum safe clearance distances.
Severe weather, falling trees and vehicle accidents can bring down powerlines. Fallen powerlines are dangerous and should not be touched or approached under any circumstances. Always assume wires are live and capable of causing injury or even death.
If you find powerlines on the ground:
- Assume all powerlines are live and capable of causing injury or even death
- Keep yourself, other people and machinery 10 metres from powerlines
- Call us on 132 004 or emergency services on 000 for help immediately
Be aware any object that comes into contact with powerlines could be live. The area is more dangerous in wet conditions as water is an excellent conductor of electricity. Any metallic object, including fences, will be electrified if they touch or are even close to a live fallen powerline. Even a tree branch can be a potential conductor of electricity if it is in contact with a live powerline.
When a vehicle collides with a power pole
Vehicle accidents can sometimes involve our infrastructure, including collisions with power poles. If you find yourself in a situation where a powerline is in contact with your vehicle, stay inside the vehicle until help arrives. No one should touch or approach the vehicle. Instead, call emergency services immediately on 000 or us on 132 004.
If you believe your life is threatened by staying inside the vehicle:
- Open the door
- Avoid touching the ground and the car at the same time
- Jump clear, landing with both feet together
- Shuffle or make small jumps with your feet constantly together (“kangaroo hop”) until you’re at least 10 metres from the vehicle
- If you fall when jumping clear of the vehicle, do not attempt to get up, roll away from the vehicle