Energy Safe Victoria

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Tips for electricity safety outdoors

Water and electricity don’t mix

Water and electricity do not mix, and electricity near swimming pools can be a lethal. Electric shocks received in the vicinity of a swimming pool are more likely to be fatal than those received in other locations, as bare feet, minimum clothing and wet skin reduce your body’s insulation and resistance.

NEVER use a portable electrical appliance or place an extension cord where it could be splashed or fall into the pool.

Look up, look down and live when working at home

Always be aware of the location of powerlines attached to your house or shed when working around the home.
Always keep:

  • Well clear of electric wires attached to your house or shed, and
  • Metal ladders well away from powerlines and ensure your ladder has rubber over the feet.

If digging around the home, identify the location of underground pipes and cables before you break the ground.

Managing trees near powerlines

Trees and shrubs growing in close proximity to power lines are a safety risk and can cause fires, blackouts or power surges. Their foliage and branches must be kept clear of powerlines and any electricity infrastructure.

If trees are touching or in close proximity to powerlines, contact your local council or electricity distribution company to seek advice or hire an tree removal specialist (or aborist) to do the work.

Safety tips for managing trees near powerlines

  • Plant low growing species near powerlines – ask your electricity distribution company for a list of suitable species for your area
  • Only authorised powerline pruning contractors should prune trees touching or in close proximity to power lines – electricity distribution companies can provide lists of qualified power line pruning contractors
  • Before pruning tree branches or foliage, look around you for overhead powerlines
  • Pruning should be done before trees and shrubs grow to within one metre in any direction of power lines
  • Avoid pruning in high winds.

Caravan power supplies

Ensure the power supply cord to your caravan is in good condition and rated at 15 amps. Beware of overhead powerlines and wires when erecting caravan TV antennas.

Read more about Caravan power supplies in our Caravan safety brochure, here.

Electricity infrastructure

Do not climb or go near transmission line towers or enter substations. These carry extremely high voltages and can result in electrocution.