Ausgrid is reminding the public to remain vigilant around fallen wires after last week’s wild weather brought down a wire in the front yard of a St Ives home and sparked a near miss which could have proved fatal.
Neighbouring properties had not lost power, so a member of the public picked up the fallen cable and tied it to a metal garden light post.
An Optus crew called to inspect the wire quickly realised it was still live and contacted Ausgrid for an emergency response. Scorch marks were visible on the metal garden light post.
The wire is used to power streetlights which is why the properties still had power. The wire is only energised at night when streetlights are on and switches off automatically during daylight hours.
Related article:CS Energy taps into UQ’s Warwick Solar Farm
Ausgrid Chief Operating Officer Trevor Armstrong said if anyone had touched the wire in the evening, it would’ve been life threatening
“I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw the photo of the live wire tied to the metal garden light. That wire was quite literally a death trap, hung out the front of a suburban Sydney home.
“It’s absolutely incredible no one was seriously injured or killed. It’s only by sheer luck we’re not responding to a tragedy,” Mr Armstrong said.
Related article: Powercor putting Geelong powerlines underground
Ausgrid said it is a timely reminder to never touch or attempt to move fallen or damaged wires.
“This situation is an opportunity for everyone to realise how dangerous fallen wires can be. The message couldn’t be simpler, stay away and call us because there are no second chances with electricity.
“Nothing is more important than the safety of our customers and our people. Wires can be replaced but human life can’t.
“There is no such thing as a safe fallen wire. If you see a fallen wire you must assume it is live, stay at least eight metres away and call Ausgrid’s emergency line on 13 13 88,” he said.