TO: ALL WOOD COUNTY ARES MEMBERS (OFFICIAL)
ALL ARES AND NON-ARES AMATEURS ANYWHERE (INFORMATION)
FROM: KEN HARRIS WA8LLM ARRL DISTRICT 3
EMERGENCY COORDINATOR WOOD COUNTY EMERGENCY COMMUNICATIONS INC.
WOOD COUNTY ARES BULLETIN NR 19.49 DATE: December 8, 2019
SUBJECT: LIVE WIRES
As communications personnel we will seldom have a reason to worry about live wires, but we should always be aware of their presence. The live wires we are talking about in this bulletin are the ones that may be laying on the ground, on a house, or on a vehicle after a wreck, after high winds, fallen trees, or other incidents that may cause them to fall.
The type of wire found, may indicate the kind of problem you are dealing with, or whether it has voltage on it. Voltage on any line is undetermined and could reach 7,200 volts or more. If it's a coax cable there's a chance that it may be TV cable and the only thing present on it is TV signals. If the wire is flat and kind of oval shape, it may be a telephone wire and have about 48 volts of Direct Current (DC), not enough to be really dangerous. If the wire is a group of three fairly large wires wrapped together, called triplex, it may be a power line going to a house or business and may have 110, 220, or 440 volts on it. If it's a single wire, with or without insulation, it may be a high tension line and have thousands of volts on it.
In any case, if you are in the area of a downed wire keep everyone away from it, and contact E-911 and the power company. If a downed line is laying on a vehicle, ALWAYS assume that it's a live wire and DO NOT touch the vehicle. Also, do not use a tree limb or other non-insulated device to move any down wire. If there is someone in a vehicle with a wire lying on it, try to keep them in there until the fallen line has been removed.
Ken Harris WA8LLM
Wood County WV