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Keep Your Disdtance From Downed Power Lines

Overhead power lines are not insulated like household power cords. What may look like insulation is actually weatherproofing material. Never touch an overhead line.

Coming in contact with power lines can easily lead to electrocution. If your ladder or piece of equipment touches an overhead line, both you and the equipment can become path for the electricity.

Safe Distances

Keep long tools, ladders, scaffolding, and other equipment away from overhead lines. Minimum safe distances increase as line voltage increases. Weather conditions and other factors also can affect safe distances.

The following table shows minimum safe distances based on line voltage.

Line Voltage Minimum Clearance
Up to 50,000 volts(typical overhead line) 10 feet
50,000 volts to 200,000 volts 15 feet
200,000 volts to 350,000 volts 20 feet
350,000 volts to 500,000 volts 25 feet
500,000 volts to 750,000 volts 35 feet
750,000 volts to 1,000,000 volts 45 feet

Contact AEP

  • Contact Southwestern Electric Power Company if a project requires you to work near power lines. For example, if you're trimming a tree near your service drop, we can de-energize the line for you.
  • Call (888) 216-3523

Fact Sheet

Use the “Look Up For Lines” Fact Sheet as a tool for training classes, community events, and more.

Fact Sheet

Use the “Anatomy of a Transmission System” Fact Sheet to understand more about how electricity travels across power lines.

Fact Sheet

Use the “Anatomy of a Distribution System” Fact Sheet to understand more about how electricity moves across power lines to your wall outlet.

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