Flood Facts Sheet
Flood waters can damage electrical installations. Deposited mud and debris can conduct electricity, making the installation unsafe during and after the flood.
Flood waters can also lead to corrosion of electrical connections and significantly increase the risk of the connection failing or causing a fire. An installation that has been inundated with flood water requires careful inspection and repair before supply can be restored
This fact sheet provides some information about what you can do to stay safe around electricity during severe flooding:
- How should I prepare for a flood?
Where possible raise all electrical appliances before the flood
If you have some warning that you will be flooded contact Essential Energy on 13 20 80 to have your supply disconnected before the flood if your home is going to be inundated. Please ring early to allow time for us to respond as we will have many calls.
If your supply has not been disconnected, turn off all switches and main switches before the flood. To reduce the risk of electric shock, do not use any part of your body to hold the meter box lid open – use the prop or an object which is non conductive.
What should I do during a flood?
- Do not stay inside a building that is inundated when the power is connected.
- Do not use any electrical appliances that have been wet or damaged.
- If you are in a boat, be aware that rising flood waters reduce the clearance of overhead powerlines.
- Be aware that floodwaters can damage the electricity network.
Always stay at least 8 metres away from the electricity network, including poles, substations, fallen powerlines and any objects in contact with them because electricity can arc to surrounding objects which means that you can be seriously injured by electricity without actually touching the powerline.
If parts of the electricity network or fallen powerlines are covered in flood waters stay at least 150 metres away because water conducts electricity. Call Essential Energy immediately on 13 20 80 as you may need to evacuate if in close proximity to buildings.
If you receive a shock or tingling sensation from any electrical appliances, plumbing, metal, sink or bath:
- Avoid all contact with the appliance or objects in question.
- Call our 24 hour supply interruptions line on 13 20 80 and report the problem as soon as you can.
After the flood
Have the installation inspected by a qualified electrician and repairs carried out before contacting Essential Energy to have power restored.
Do not plug in or use any appliances that have been in the flood water until they have been checked by a qualified electrician.
Call Essential Energy on 13 20 80 before turning the power on if the structure has been inundated by flood waters.
For more information
Essential Energy’s Public Safety team is available to facilitate Electrical Awareness sessions and discuss any questions relating to electrical safety.
For more information on electrical safety please call Essential Energy:
- General enquiries: 13 23 91
- Supply interruption: 13 20 80
- or visit www.essentialenergy.com.au
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