Farmers warned of electrical risk in warmer than usual sowing season

Farm machinery operators warned to steer clear of electrical lines by Essential Energy


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STEER CLEAR: Machinery operators are advised to sow crops with care near the electricity network.

STEER CLEAR: Machinery operators are advised to sow crops with care near the electricity network.

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Warmer than usual autumn conditions have prompted a safety warning.

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FARM machinery operators are warned to steer clear of electrical lines, after warmer than usual autumn conditions cause power lines to sag.

Essential Energy regional manager Mark Summers said farmers should assess work sites for potential hazards before they start sowing.

“The hot and dry weather we’ve experienced this summer can alter network infrastructure conditions,” Mr Summers said.

“Prolonged heat can cause power lines to sag and reduce line clearance heights from the ground.

“Be aware of the height and voltage of overhead power lines in the work area and always transport machinery in the lowered position.”

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An onsite safety observer is recommended to plan traffic paths ahead and monitor machinery movements around power lines and poles.

Mr Summers said high loads and machinery carry a much greater risk of contact with power lines.

“If machinery does contact overhead power lines, operators are advised to stay in the cabin of their vehicle and contact Essential Energy immediately om 13 20 80.”

Electricity can arc, or jump, across open spaces, so bystanders should stay eight metres away and treat power lines as if they are live.

The Armidale Express 

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