Safety tips for dealing with downed power lines on vehicles

Ameren Illinois hosted a downed power line on vehicle simulation Wednesday morning.

The Illinois Department of Transportation says that over three thousand people state wide hit power poles every year.

Ameren officials said that knowing what to do when you or someone else hits a power pole could save your life.

Officials said that the safest place in a crash with a downed power line is inside the car, as the car will usually shield you from the live wire.

However, if it isn’t possible to stay inside of the car because of a fire or other hazard, you need to hop away from the car with both feet together, making sure to not touch anything but the ground with your feet as you move away from the area.

Ameren Community Relations Coordinator, Carl Fischer said:

Hopping out of the vehicle with your feet together you are one point of contact, you want to make sure you do not touch the vehicle and the ground at the same time. Your essentially like a bird on a wire at that point, the electricity has no path through you and it will take the path of least resistance which will continue to be around the car. 

Ameren officials said if you see someone injured in a vehicle, and power lines are down on top of the car, call 9-1-1.  Crews will remove the live wire before getting the victim out of the car.

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