SDG&E Reminds Customers To Think "Safety" Around Electricity

May is National Electrical Safety Month

May 22, 2013

SAN DIEGO, May 22, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Safety is a top priority for San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) and National Electrical Safety Month serves as a reminder of the importance of acting safely around power lines.

"Safety is our number one priority at SDG&E and we advise our customers to always assume that all power lines are 'live' and stay well clear of them at all times," said David L. Geier, vice president of electric operations for SDG&E.  "It's very important that our community is aware of the dangers of electricity and take the necessary precautions to stay safe."

SDG&E offers the following safety tips:

Down or Broken Power Lines:

  • Fallen electric lines are extremely dangerous.  Report any downed lines to 9-1-1 and SDG&E immediately at 1-800-611-SDGE (7343). 
  • Stay clear of the line and do not touch it.
  • Always assume that power lines are energized.  If a person has come into contact with a power line, don't touch the person or any equipment involved or nearby. The line may be still energized and could be extremely dangerous.
  • Freeing a person or animal from energized power lines or equipment should only be attempted by a qualified electrical worker.

If a Vehicle is Involved:

  • Sit calmly until help arrives.
  • Warn others not to touch the vehicle and direct them to call 9-1-1.
  • If the vehicle is on fire and you must leave it, open the door or window and jump clear without touching the vehicle and the ground at the same time. Do not allow yourself to become a path of electricity from the vehicle to the ground.
  • Be careful not to fall back against the vehicle and to avoid any wires on the ground.

Overhead Electric Lines Safety Tips:

  • If a Mylar balloon (metallic coated balloon), kite or any object becomes entangled in an overhead power line, call 9-1-1 or SDG&E.  Do not remove anything caught in electric lines, not even an animal.
  • When you are working around electric overhead lines, follow these rules:
    • Watch where you are going.
    • Stay clear of the power line and never touch it.
  • Keep all machinery, equipment, and materials such as scaffolding tools, boat masts, fruit-picking poles, antennas, satellite dishes, pool skimmers handles, metal ladders, etc., and people at least 10 feet away from the lines. If it looks like the lines will be in your way, call SDG&E.  Depending on the nature of your job, SDG&E might be able to turn off the electricity, cover the lines, or even move them temporarily while you complete your work.

Underground Electric Lines Safety Tips:

  • Call Underground Alert Service at 8-1-1 before you dig. SDG&E will send someone to your site for free to show you exactly where our lines are buried. Digging, drilling or blasting can damage these underground lines and cause injury, electrocution or fire. 
  • If you see an open SDG&E transformer or other piece of equipment, call SDG&E and we will investigate.  Do not touch the equipment as this could lead to injury or death.

For other safety tips, please visit

SDG&E is a regulated public utility that provides safe and reliable energy service to 3.4 million consumers through 1.4 million electric meters and more than 860,000 natural gas meters in San Diego and southern Orange counties. The utility's area spans 4,100 square miles. SDG&E is committed to creating ways to help customers save energy and money every day. SDG&E is a subsidiary of Sempra Energy (NYSE: SRE), a Fortune 500 energy services holding company based in San Diego.  Connect with SDG&E's Customer Contact Center at 800-411-7343, on Twitter (@SDGE) and Facebook.


SOURCE San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E)

For further information: Amber Albrecht, San Diego Gas & Electric, (877) 866-2066,, Twitter: @sdge