ESFI Urges Consumers to Generate Safety During Outages! (Arlington,
Va.)-As consumer reliance on electricity has increased, tolerance for
power outages has declined. To combat the havoc wreaked by ice storms,
thunderstorms, high winds and hurricanes, many homeowners turn to
portable electric generators. “Portable electric generators are a good
source of power for heat, light, refrigeration and cooking during
electrical outages. But, if generators are improperly installed or
operated, they can become deadly,” noted Michael G. Clendenin, executive
director of the Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI).
“People die needlessly every year in accidents that involve portable
electric generators. Safety awareness can prevent those deaths.” ESFI
recommends following these portable electric generator safety
precautions to avoid dangerous situations:
NEVER operate the generator in enclosed or partially enclosed
spaces, including homes, garages and basements. Generators produce
high levels of carbon monoxide very quickly, a colorless, odorless,
Keep the generator dry. To protect it from moisture, operate on a
dry surface under an open canopy-like structure.
Plug appliances directly into the generator. Or, use a heavy-duty
outdoor-rated extension cord that is rated in watts or amps at least
equal to the sum of the connected appliance loads.
Do not connect your generator directly to your household wiring, as
this can back feed along the power lines and electrocute anyone
coming in contact with them, including line workers making repairs
- Make sure the generator is properly grounded.
Do not overload the generator. A portable generator should be used
only when necessary, and only to power essential equipment or
Make sure fuel for the generator is stored safely, away from living
areas, in properly labeled containers, and away from fuel-burning
appliances. And before re-fueling, always turn the generator off and
let it cool down.
Turn off all appliances powered by the generator before shutting
down the generator.
Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for safe operation and
- Keep children away from portable generators at all times.
“Complacency around portable electric generators is deadly,” Clendenin
notes. “Following these safety precautions can help keep you and your
family safe while you wait for the power to come back on.” For these and
other electrical safety tips, visit the ESFI website at
www.electrical-safety.org or call 703-841-3229. For additional
electrical safety information, visit the Foundation’s web site at
www.electrical-safety.org or call 703-841-3229. Founded in 1994, ESFI,
the Electrical Safety Foundation International, is North America’s only
non-profit organization dedicated exclusively to promoting electrical
safety in the home, school and workplace. A registered 501(c)(3) funded
by leading electrical manufacturers, internationally recognized testing
laboratories, electrical unions and associations, utilities and consumer
groups and individuals, ESFI sponsors National Electrical Safety Month
each May, and engages in public education campaigns and proactive media
relations to help reduce property damage, injury and death due to
STAY AWAY FROM DOWNED POWER LINES
Do not go around power lines on the ground. Always assume line is
energized and call Concordia Electric. Keep everyone away from the area
until our personnel arrive on the scene.
If one must be used, place it in a “No trip zone” and never under carpet
or rugs. Connecting multiple cords or using damaged ones may cause
overheating and fires.
Keep heaters and fans at least 3 feet away from curtains and furniture.
An adapter must be used when plugging in a heater with a three-prong
plug in a two-hole outlet. DO NOT REMOVE THIRD PRONG!! Never go to sleep
with a space heater on.
To prevent shocks and death, GFCIs (ground fault circuit interrupter)
should be installed anywhere water and electricity can mix.
DO NOT FLY KITES NEAR POWER LINES
DO NOT CLIMB TREES NEAR POWER LINES
KEEP ANTENNAS AND LADDERS AWAY FROM POWER LINES
DO NOT USE ELECTRICAL APPLIANCES, SUCH AS HAIR DRYERS AND RADIOS,
AROUND SHOWERS OR BATHS.
NEVER PULL A PLUG OUT BY THE CORD
OVERHEAD POWER LINE SAFETY ACT
Louisiana Law (LRS 45:141-146) prohibits unauthorized persons from
working within 10 feet of any high voltage overhead lines. The law
requires certain conditions be met before work is done within 10 feet of
overhead power lines. This also includes moving equipment under the
power lines. Notice is to be given to owner or operator of lines at
least 48 hours before any work is done. The work shall be performed only
after satisfactory mutual arrangements have been negotiated between the
owner or operator of the high voltage overhead lines and the person or
persons responsible for the work to be done.