Electrical Dangers

Tips to Avoid Electrical Danger
Overhead Lines & Equipment
Tips to avoid electrical danger from overhead lines and equipment:
  • If you are planning to cut limbs or trees that are near overhead power lines, and there is a danger that the limbs or tree could fall on power lines, please contact the City of Lebanon Electric Department prior to beginning the work. Lebanon will conduct an on-site visit and recommend solutions to prevent an accident. Please call us several days in advance to perform this service. If you don’t call us, you could be liable for any damage to power lines caused by falling trees or limbs.
  • If you see a downed power line, call 9-1-1 immediately to report it. Don’t touch the line or anything that is in contact with the line. Don’t attempt to move the line. Keep others away.
  • Never attempt to move an object (tree limb, kite, model airplane, etc.) from a power line yourself. Never climb the pole. Contact the City of Lebanon Electric Department.
  • When house painting, ensure that nothing, including you, your ladder, or your paintbrush or roller, comes in contact with the power line supplying electricity to your home.
  • When moving antennas, metal gutters, or other long metal objects, ensure that they don’t inadvertently touch a power line.
  • When pruning trees with a long-handled pruning instrument, especially a metal one, check above you to avoid touching a power line or any limbs that are growing into power lines.
  • When using an aluminum ladder, check above you for power lines. Aluminum is an exceptionally good conductor of electricity. If you touch a power line with an aluminum ladder, you could be seriously injured or killed.
  • When working on a roof, which may put you close to an overhead power line, avoid standing up and accidentally touching a line with your head or shoulder.
Underground Lines & Equipment
Tips to avoid electrical danger from underground lines and equipment:
  • Always call before you dig. For more information, visit the Call Before You Dig page
  • Keep away from transformers. They are generally green and mounted on concrete slabs or fiberglass pads and are found where there are underground power lines.
  • Never attempt to open the door of a transformer. If you find a door unlocked, call The City of Lebanon immediately.
  • Report issues with your electric meter or meter socket, including broken glass, loose sockets, etc.
Electricity & Water
Tips to avoid electrical danger from electricity and water:
  • Because water makes it easier for you to become an electrical path to the ground, be careful when using electricity around water.
  • Don’t touch an electrical appliance while in a pool or hot tub.
  • Don’t touch any electrical appliances while in the bathtub or shower.
  • Don’t use power tools while the ground is wet or while standing in water.
  • Make sure outdoor electrical outlets are weatherproofed and protected by a ground fault circuit Interrupter (GFCI). This device is designed to protect you from electrical shock.
Standby Generator Safety
A generator can be very useful during a power outage, but remember to always follow the manufacturer’s instructions to ensure safe and proper operation. To protect yourself and your family, or your business, remember to follow these rules.

  • Have a fully charged, properly rated fire extinguisher (i.e., rated for electrical and gas fires) ready at all times.
  • Have a licensed electrician install stationary or stand-by emergency generators.
  • Keep children away from generators.
  • Obey all local, state, and national electrical and fire codes.
  • Plug appliances directly into an emergency or portable generator. This is the safest way to use a generator. We don’t recommend connection of a generator directly to a breaker panel, fuse box, or meter box.
  • Store gasoline in approved fuel containers and out of children’s reach.
  • Call an electrician to repair a generator; never attempt to repair it yourself.
  • Never connect generators to your utility service through receptacles, outlets, breakers, fuses, or meter boxes.
  • Never replenish fuel in a generator while it is running.
  • Operate your generator outside. Never operate it inside a building or garage.
When an accident happens:
  • Call 9-1-1.
  • Don’t attempt to move a power line.
  • Don’t touch a victim who’s in contact with a power line.
  • Don’t touch anything that’s in contact with the victim of an electrical emergency.
  • If a victim, who is not in contact with the power line, is not breathing or has no pulse, call 9-1-1. If you are trained in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), begin immediately.
Auto Accidents
If you come across an auto accident involving a power pole, fallen line, or transformer:
  • Call 9-1-1.
  • Stay back at least 50 feet.
  • Treat the vehicle as if it is energized.
If you are involved in an accident involving a power pole, fallen line, or transformer:
  • Remember, electricity can travel through the ground to you. So, stay inside your vehicle and call 9-1-1.
  • Wait in the vehicle until assistance arrives and we advise you that it is safe to get out. Fallen lines may still be energized even if they don't appear to be live.
If there is a fire or medical emergency and you must exit the car, follow the following instructions. This is a very dangerous maneuver that should only be used as a last resort:
  1. Open the car door all the way while seated. Look up and around to ensure you can exit the car without contacting the fallen line.
  2. Stand on the frame of the car with your arms close to your body or crossed over your chest. Slide your feet together.
  3. Jump out of the car with your feet together and your arms touching your body. Never make contact with the car and the ground at the same time.
  4. Hop or shuffle quickly away, keeping your feet together.
  5. Move at least 50 feet away from the scene. Slowly slide your feet apart. If you feel tingling, put your feet back together and hop farther away until you no longer feel the tingling sensation.
  6. Once you are a safe distance away, call 9-1-1.