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National Grid Reminds Customers to be Safe When Working, Playing Outdoors as Memorial Day Weekend Draws Near


May 22, 2014 – For many, the arrival of Memorial Day Weekend signifies the unofficial start to summer – and a time to finally put away snow shovels and boots in favor of heading outdoors for seasonal fun, projects and chores. During this time, National Grid reminds its customers to work and play safely when around outside electricity sources.


Whether tossing around a ball, landscaping or simply enjoying the warmer weather, customers should always exercise caution when around electric facilities, poles or equipment. National Grid reminds customers, especially at this time of year, that contact with power lines can cause serious injury or even death. Individuals should always stay a minimum of 10 feet away from overhead power lines. People can be the conduit through which electricity flows to the ground, so it is safest to never work or play in any area where you are in danger of directly or indirectly contacting power lines.

Household Projects Require Extra Care

·         When painting, be careful near electric lines, and try to keep a distance of at least 10 feet, even from those connected to your home.  Avoid touching power lines with any part of your body, ladder or tools.  Metal parts and moisture conduct electricity, so don’t use an aluminum ladder or a damp, moist or wet wooden ladder.  Never place a ladder in a puddle of water or on damp ground.  Before erecting a ladder, always look up to be sure it will not come in contact with, or even come close to, a power line.  Always carry ladders horizontally, and keep them away from power lines.


·         Don’t use power tools (or any electric device) while standing on a damp floor or wet ground.  Be sure equipment is properly grounded.  If the power tool is damaged by contact with water, you could receive a fatal shock.


·         Indoor extension cords are not safe to use outdoors. Before plugging in any extension cord, check to see if the insulation is cracked or frayed.  If there is damage, replace it with a new cord.


·         For an added measure of protection, install Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters on all outdoor electric outlets. They are designed to help to prevent shock injury.


·         Before installing a new antenna, satellite dish or any rooftop appliance, be certain it is clear of all power lines.  The antenna must be firmly secured to the roof and may require bracing with guy wires to withstand high winds.  A metal antenna can form a deadly conduit for electric current if blown into a power line.


·         Before beginning your spring planting project, check with the experts at least two full working days in advance of digging to determine the precise location of underground lines and facilities.  A simple phone call to Dig Safe® at 811 can prevent serious personal injury, property damage and service interruptions caused by accidentally digging into electric, gas, telephone, water, sewer or cable facilities. Visit http://bcove.me/2jj1uovoto view a short video on the importance of calling 811.


Special Cautions for Outdoor Recreation

·         Kites, model airplanes and other toys should be flown only in open fields, far from any trees and power lines.  If a toy gets tangled in a tree or power line, the safest thing to do is leave it there.  Don’t fly toys on damp or rainy days.  Wet string can conduct electricity.  Don’t use metal string or a kite that has metal in its construction.  If it touches a power line, the life of the person holding it could be in danger.


·         When sailing and fishing, be alert near shorelines, inlets and marinas for overhead lines that could come in contact with masts or antennae.  Before casting fishing line, check for nearby electric lines.


·         While outdoors, remember that the coating you may see on overhead wires is intended to protect the wire from the weather. It will notprotect you from electric shock.  Overhead power lines carry very high voltages, so it’s safest to assume that all overhead wires are electric wires. 


·         Stay as far away from downed wires as possible.  If you see a downed wire, immediately notify the fire department and National Grid.

About National Grid


National Grid (LSE: NG; NYSE:NGG) is an electricity and gas company that connects consumers to energy sources through its networks. The company is at the heart of one of the greatest challenges facing our society - to create new, sustainable energy solutions for the future and developing an energy system that underpins economic prosperity in the 21st century. National Grid holds a vital position at the center of the energy system and it ‘joins everything up’.


In the northeast US, we connect more than seven million gas and electric customers to vital energy sources, essential for our modern lifestyles. In Great Britain, we run the gas and electricity systems that our society is built on, delivering gas and electricity across the country. 


National Grid delivers electricity to approximately 3.3 million customers in Massachusetts, New York and Rhode Island. It is the largest distributor of natural gas in northeastern U.S., serving approximately 3.4 million customers in New York, Massachusetts and Rhode Island.


For more information please visit our website: www.nationalgridus.com


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