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Electricity is a tremendous force that we deliver and control in wires and equipment. As long as electricity is isolated, we can use it safely. But when the full force of electricity is unleashed, accidents can occur. Knowing a few simple principles can save you from injury or possibly death and can keep you safe wherever electricity is present.


  • Don't place cords where they can be damaged by walking on them or where damage can go unnoticed.
  • Ensure that cords are not broken, frayed or have damaged insulation. If there is any sign of damage, have them repaired or replaced immediately.

Electric Heaters

  • Keep flammable materials clear of electric heaters.
  • Use Underwriters Laboratories, Inc. (UL) approved appliances. The UL seal ensures the product has been tested.
  • Don't place blankets, drapes or furniture close to electric heaters or hot plates.


  • Don't overload an outlet with too many cords. Be especially cautious of this when decorating for holidays.
  • Place safety covers over outlets, especially if you have small children or toddlers. Never let children play with outlets or power cords.

Power Poles

  • Never climb on power poles, transmission towers, or any electrical equipment.
  • Don’t attach signs to power poles.

Electricity and Water

  • Water and electric appliances don't mix. If an appliance falls into a tub of water or a sink, or if you touch an electrical appliance with wet hands or while standing in water, you risk severe electrical shock or possibly death.
  • Never use any electric appliance, including hair dryers, TVs, and radios, near water-filled sinks, bathtubs or toilets.
  • Always dry your hands before touching electric appliances.
  • Keep the floor around your washer and dryer dry and clean.
  • Always unplug small appliances when washing them. Never immerse appliances such as mixers or toasters in water.
  • Any outlets near water sources (in bathrooms, kitchens near a sink or outdoor outlets) should be GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupter) protected.

Power Lines

  • Never fly kites or release balloons near overhead power lines.
  • Always look up and look around when moving a ladder or equipment that may come in contact with overhead power lines.
  • Do not touch or go near a fallen power line.
  • Never touch or go near a person in contact with a downed power line. Call 911.    
  • Contractors have special considerations when it comes to power line safety. Click here to view tips about overhead power line safety for contractors.  
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