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May is National Electrical Safety Month

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Delmarva Power Encourages Safety Around Electricity

SALISBURY , Md . May is National Electrical Safety Month and Delmarva Power is reminding everyone to review home, school and workplace electrical safety practices.

Electric shocks kill nearly 400 people and injure thousands nationally each year, according to the Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI.org). Increasing electrical safety awareness, following electrical safety guidelines, and using tools and technology designed to address electrical hazards are all components of a safety program that can be used in your home, school or office. Wiring hazards are both a major cause of electrocutions and home fires, killing hundreds and injuring thousands each year. Contact with power lines and the misuse of major appliances, surge suppressors, power strips and extension cords also contribute to serious accidents and injuries.

“Everyone needs to be aware of the potential hazards involved with using electricity,” said John Allen, Delmarva Power Vice President. “Many people work outdoors, trimming trees and using ladders and scaffolds,” Allen said. “It’s very important to know where electric wires and equipment are located and to work safely around them,” he added. Avoid unnecessary risks when working around electricity by calling a licensed contractor or electrician.

Delmarva Power urges everyone to call 811 a few days prior to the start of any projects that require digging. Underground utilities will be located and marked. This will help avoid equipment damage and injuries. Visit www.Call811.com for more information.

Here are some additional electrical safety tips:

  • If you see a downed wire, stay away! Call Delmarva Power at 800-898-8045.
  • Remind children to stay away from electric facilities such as substations, transmission towers and green electrical metal boxes that are commonly found in neighborhoods.
  • When carrying long or tall items, such as ladders, tree saws and pool cleaning equipment, hold them parallel to the ground. Look up before you raise them to be sure they're clear of any electric, cable television or telephone lines.
  • Remember that electricity can move through conductive materials, such as water, metal, wood, aluminum, string and plastics.
  • Be careful to stay away from overhead lines when trimming trees or when working near your property’s electrical connection.

For more information on using electricity safely:

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Delmarva Power, a public utility owned by Pepco Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: POM), provides safe and reliable energy to nearly 498,000 electric delivery customers in Delaware and Maryland and over 123,000 natural gas delivery customers in northern Delaware .