We want you to use electricity safely in your homes and businesses. Listed below are some tips for keeping you and your family safe when using electricity.
Cords and outlets
- Don't place cords where they can be damaged by walking on them or where damage can go unnoticed.
- Ensure cords are not broken, frayed or damaged. If there is any sign of damage, have them repaired or replaced immediately.
- Only use extension cords with three-prong plugs for appliances that must be grounded.
- Do not overload an outlet with too many cords or power strips.
Electrical equipment and power lines
- Never climb on electrical equipment like power poles, transformers, etc.
- Do not attach signs to power poles. They can be hazards to our linemen, who may have to climb the pole at some point.
- Never fly kites near power lines.
- Before working outside, always look up and all around for overhead electric lines. Contact with overhead power lines can result in serious injury or even death.
- When working with ladders or transporting equipment, take note of overhead power line locations and keep yourself, your tools and your equipment more than 10 feet away. Be sure to carry all tools horizontally, especially ladders. The only safe contact is no contact.
- Stay away from transformers. They are generally green and mounted on concrete slabs, and are found where there are underground power lines.
- Never attempt to open the door of one of these transformers. If you find a door unlocked, or the equipment is damaged, call PNM immediately at 888-DIAL-PNM.
- Never enter an electric substation. If you see suspicious activity inside or near the substation, call PNM.
- Keep metallic balloons indoors, as they are highly conductive. Dispose of them properly in the trash and do not release balloons outdoors because they could fly into power lines and cause fires and outages. Below is a video that was sent to us from our friends at Southern California Edison, that shows the dangers of balloons that are caught in power lines:
Downed lines and damaged electrical equipment
- Stay away from downed or low-hanging power lines and damaged electrical equipment. Call PNM if you come across a downed line.
- ALWAYS assume that electric lines and equipment are energized and have the potential to cause serious injuries or even death. Call 911 in an emergency.
- Don't touch the line, equipment, or anyone or anything in contact with them. Instead, stay at least 200 feet away from the scene, and immediately contact PNM.
- If a fallen power line is resting on or near your vehicle, call 911 and stay in the vehicle until first responders and PNM can work together to clear the scene.
Electricity and water
- Do not use power tools while the ground is wet or while standing in water.
- Never use any electric appliance, including hair dryers, TVs, and radios, near water-filled sinks, bathtubs or toilets.
- Always dry your hands before touching electric appliances.
- Keep the floor around your washer and dryer dry and clean.
- Always unplug small appliances when washing them. Never put appliances, such as mixers or toasters, in water.
- Any outlets near water sources (in bathrooms, kitchens near a sink or outdoor outlets) should be ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) protected.
- Make sure outdoor electrical outlets are weatherproofed and protected by a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI). This device is designed to protect you from electrical shock.