Toronto Hydro Raises Awareness About The Dangers Of Powerlines

Power lines
Photo by Matthew Henry on Unsplash

Powerline Safety Week is May 15–21 and Toronto Hydro is reminding customers about the dangers of downed powerlines and how to stay safe from electrical harm.

Powerlines are critical for distributing power to the many homes and businesses of Toronto, but they are also dangerous. Extreme weather events can bring trees and branches down onto powerlines and cause unsafe conditions. Below are tips on how to stay safe around downed powerlines:

  • Always assume a downed powerline is live and that the ground around it may be electrified

  • Always stay at least 10 metres back — about the length of a school bus — and report it immediately to 416-542-8000

  • If a powerline lands on a vehicle, the driver should remain in the vehicle and drive away slowly until they are at least 10 metres away and then report it or call 911

  • If a powerline lands on a vehicle and the driver must exit due to immediate danger, the driver should jump from the vehicle without touching the vehicle and the ground at the same time and land with both feet together. They should then shuffle at least 10 metres away from the vehicle and report it or call 911

Powerline contacts are the leading cause of electrical-related fatalities in Ontario, with a staggering 19 fatalities and 1,393 overhead powerline contacts reported to the Electrical Safety Authority (ESA) between 2012 and 2021. This is a 305 per cent increase in powerline contacts among the general public.

Powerline Safety Week is an annual campaign led by the ESA and local distributors like Toronto Hydro to raise awareness about the risks posed by powerlines. For more life-saving tips and educational content, please visit

Toronto Hydro is committed to keeping customers safe at home, at work and around the city. To learn how to recognize and avoid electrical hazards, please visit

“Extreme weather can happen at any time and bring down powerlines in an instant. It’s important that customers understand the dangers of downed wires and how to protect themselves from injury in the event of an emergency” – Daniel McNeil, Corporate Spokesperson, Toronto Hydro


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