Stay clear of downed or damaged power lines

Updated: May. 26, 2021 at 6:28 PM CDT
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HASTINGS, Neb. (KSNB) - Heavy winds and severe weather can lead to downed power lines and even power outages.

If you see a down or damaged power line, try to stay as far away from it as possible and contact your local utilities department. Do not try to fix it.

If you approach one in your car, utility workers say don’t drive over it and stay inside the car until someone comes to de-energize the line. Downed lines can energize other items around it and getting out could be deadly.

“The best thing you can do is to stay inside your vehicle,” Leanne Doose, Public Relations Manager for Southern Public Power District, said. “The moment you step out, your body becomes a conductor of electricity as it travels from the car or your body to the ground.”

Doose said SPPD prepares for storms by keeping their staff on standby in case they do need to get out to fix a line.

“When a storm like this presents itself, we all know that at any moment we will need to spring into action,” she said.

Doose also said if you lose power, keep your exterior doors closed to keep the air inside your home.

“The best thing you can do if you lose power is keep the doors to the exterior closed and keep the cool air inside as long as you can,” she said. “The same philosophy really applies to your refrigerators and freezers. That food will stay good for some time, but it works best if you keep those doors closed.”

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