If you're burning, remember utility polesEach spring, uncontrolled ditch and field burns damage or destroy electric utility poles.
Each spring, uncontrolled ditch and field burns damage or destroy electric utility poles.
“You pay for the repairs if you’re responsible for the fire,” said Ryan Smith, safety services manager for Otter Tail Power Company. “An average charge can exceed $3,700 a pole, and that doesn’t make up for the power outage or safety hazard that a burned pole creates.”
“Please take every precaution when you burn ditches and fields. Make sure you have enough people to monitor the fire. Build fire walls by starting small controlled fires around poles, pedestals, and other electrical facilities. Trench wherever necessary. And take time to work safely,” he said.
Contact with electrical equipment can damage farm implements and interrupt service.
Otter Tail Power Company reminds farm workers to stay clear of utility poles, overhead lines and other electrical equipment. Even when no injuries occur, contact with electrical equipment can interrupt electrical service and damage farm equipment.
Otter Tail Power Company is especially concerned during planting season.
“A little planning can help keep everyone safe and productive,” said Smith. “Think about the routes you take in and out of fields. Will tillage equipment folded for road travel clear the overhead electrical lines that cross that field approach? When tillage equipment is extended will it snag that nearby pole? And look up before you raise the truck box because contact with energized lines can result in personal injury or death.”