Electricity should never be mixed with water because the results can be fatal. With December rains causing floods in homes, yards and garages, dangerous electric hazards are created. How can you stay safe when there is flooding?
Portland warns its residents to stay clear of downed power lines particularly in areas that are flooded or with saturated grounds. There are underground electric vaults, transformers installed over ground and electrical equipment that can be hazardous when there is flooding. Never assume that there is no more electrical energy until the utility company or emergency responders have confirmed that they are not. Take note that a safe distance is greater than normal because water can conduct electricity father than dry ground.
If the home or business is flooded, refrain from standing in water that is in contact with electrical outlets or equipment and appliances that are still plugged in or energized. Hazards are not always visible so make sure to keep away from the waters.
In situations where a person or a pet is in contact with a live source of electricity or water with electric current flowing through it, refrain from becoming another victim. Do not make the situation worse by approaching or touching the person or pet. Do not step into the water and attempt to handle the rescue but call 911 immediately for emergency responders. You can certainly turn off electricity from its source.
If you are planning to vacate a flooded home, do not forget to shut off the circuit breaker before you leave. De-energize the electrical system by turning it off from the main control panel at the main breaker including other smaller breakers. After the flood make sure to call electrician 24 hour service to ensure that it is safe to bring the power back.
Before restoring power, ask the electrician to check the electrical appliances and electronic devices that have been submerged in flood waters. Wait for the confirmation of the electrician 24 hour service before using your appliances and devices. During power outages, the utility company usually restores service when it safe but don’t turn on the power while the home is still flooded.