The number of power-related incidents in the farming community in north Wales, Cheshire and Merseyside has increased to a four-year high, new data has revealed.
Electricity provider SP Energy Networks has confirmed there were 206 power-related incidents on farms and farmland in the region in 2016 – a rate of four a week and an increase of five per cent on 2015.
This included 36 incidents where tipper trucks, cranes or machinery came into contact with overhead power lines.
Such collisions can have devastating consequences, resulting in life-changing or even fatal injuries.
In total, more than a third (37 per cent) of all the power-related incidents reported in SP Energy Network’s Welsh network in 2016 were on farms and farmland.
SP Energy Networks has unparalleled insight into electrical safety.
As the manager and maintainer of underground cable and overhead lines, it supplies electricity to customers across north Wales.
If an emergency does occur, farmers are advised to keep people and livestock away from the power lines and to contact SP Energy Networks’ 24-hour hotline number by calling 105 or 08000 015400 to report the emergency.
Gary Evans, health and safety manager at SP Energy Networks, said: “We have collected evidence from across the north Wales, Cheshire and Merseyside area and discovered that among the agricultural community, the number of power-related incidents is at a four-year high.
“In a bid to raise awareness in the community of the risks associated with power lines, we created an interactive exhibition at the Anglesey Show.
“We hope we can help workers to be more informed of the risks and help them to stay safe.”
Guidance on working safely near overhead power lines can be found on http://www.spenergynetworks.co.uk