A foremost concern at the City of Fredericksburg Electric Department is the safety of our customers and employees. We exercise a great deal of care ensuring that our facilities are safe. But even with our many precautions, electrical contact accidents have occurred. Remember, power lines can kill.
After the electrical power has passed through the distribution substations, it has been reduced to a voltage of 12,500 volts (12.5 kV). This is the voltage of the wires on the top of the poles in an overhead area or in the cable in an underground system. 13.2 kV is a low enough voltage where the clearance requirements allow the wires to be reasonably placed in residential and commercial areas. At this voltage, however, the electrical losses are still relatively low.
The customer should be aware that at this voltage, tree limbs and other objects that the customer normally thinks of as non-conductive will conduct electricity. It is not safe to attempt to move a distribution line with a piece of wood or other object.
In case of emergencies with distribution voltages it is imperative that the Electric Department be contacted to handle the emergency.
The highest numbers of interruptions occur at this level, as the exposure is the greatest. When you are working near power lines or moving tools and equipment near power lines, stay alert.
The Texas Health and Safety Code, Chapter 752, prohibits all activities in which persons or equipment may come within six feet of energized overhead high voltage power lines. These laws carry both criminal and civil liabilities. In addition, contractors and owners are legally responsible for the safety of construction workers under these laws. If you or your company must work near overhead power lines, call us at (830) 997-7521. We will help you arrange for the lines to be de-energized and/or moved. Make your work place a safe one and remember to look up and live near overhead lines.