Electricity is generally a safe and reliable source of power for your home. If used carelessly, however, electricity can be dangerous. The Electrical Safety Foundation International has designated May as National Electrical Safety Month to raise awareness about electrical safety issues. You can do your part by familiarizing yourself with electrical hazards and taking steps to make your home safer.
Here are some safety tips:
- Check electric cords for fraying or cracking. Replace cords that may be damaged, and don’t overload electric outlets.
- Remember extension cords are intended to be temporary; they are not intended as permanent household wiring.
- Don’t run cords under carpets or rugs and don’t tack or nail cords to walls or floors.
- Keep electric appliances and tools away from water. Never reach for or unplug an appliance that has fallen into water; instead, turn the power off at the breaker before you unplug the appliance or remove it from the water.
- Never put anything other than an electrical plug in an outlet. Use outlet covers or caps to protect children.
- Keep your home’s electrical system in good repair. Contact a licensed electrical contractor if you have flickering lights, sparks, non-functioning outlets, or need wiring repairs or upgrades.
- Never touch downed power lines!
- Always call your local utility or 911 if you see lines down.
- Watch for overhead lines every time you use a ladder, work on roofs, trees, or carry long tools or loads. Keep kites, model airplanes, and metallic balloons away from power lines.
- Know what’s below before you dig. At least 3 days before starting any digging or excavating project, call 811, the National One Call Center, to have underground utility lines, pipes, and cables marked for free.
- Avoid planting trees underneath power lines or near utility equipment.
*This list is intended for informational purposes only.*