What happens if the National Grid goes down?

If the power grid goes down, water and natural gas will also likely fail at some point, so planning is critical. Without a plan in place, most of us would be in bad shape with an extended grid outage. The power grid is one of those things we take for granted, but it’s time to acknowledge that it’s getting older.

Can you touch a downed power line?

Never touch them. For safety’s sake, always assume that a fallen power line is live, and follow these guidelines: Avoid touching the downed line with your hand or an object, such as a stick, broom or pole. Avoid touching anything, such as a car, object or equipment, or anyone who is in contact with a fallen power line.

How can you tell if a power line is downed?

There’s no way to tell if a power line is live from just looking at it. Even if the power line isn’t actively sparking, always assume that it’s carrying electricity. When you see a downed power line, make sure that you don’t touch the utility pole or any objects touching the wire.

Can downed power line shock you?

If you see a downed power line, always assume it is energized. Avoid going near the power line or anything in contact with it as objects touching or near the power line can also be energized. You could be shocked by contact with the power line or any secondary objects touching or near the downed wires.

Why can birds sit on power lines?

Birds sitting on a wire don’t touch the ground (or anything in contact with the ground), so electricity stays in the power line. But, if a bird touches a power line and equipment or other metal that is grounded, it gives electricity a path to the ground, and the bird could be shocked.

How far should you stay away from a downed power line?

35 feet
Keep a distance of 35 feet, as the ground around downed power lines may be energized. Assume ALL downed power lines are live. If you see someone in direct or indirect contact with a downed line, DO NOT touch him/her. You could become energized as well.

Will cell phones work if grid goes down?

However, under virtually every other scenario, including the power grid getting knocked out by hackers, your electronic devices will continue to function properly, provided that you have alternate power sources. Beyond that, your cell phone is going to work for at least four hours after the power grid goes down.