Electrical Safety Tips

For your safety, please report downed lines or power interruptions at (956) 983-6300. Never attempt to remove damaged power lines from your home or property. Call (956) 983-6300 or 911 to report downed lines.

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Small Appliances

  • 1 Electricity and water don't mix. Keep all electrical products and cords, such as radios, televisions, hair dryers, or curling irons, away from water, including sinks or bathtubs.
  • 2 Never reach into the water to get an appliance that has fallen in without first unplugging the appliance.
  • 3 Unplug the toaster or toaster oven before using a knife or fork to remove stuck bread or bagels.

Children and Pets

  • 1 Don't allow pets to chew on electrical cords.
  • 2 Put safety covers on all wall outlets. Avoid ornamental safety caps that may tempt a child to play with wall outlets.
  • 3 Never leave lamp sockets empty. Always replace burned out light bulbs immediately.
  • 4 Use extension cords on a temporary basis because they are not safe as permanent household wiring. Make sure the cord is not wrapped around itself or another object. Be sure the selected cord meets the intended use and check the electrical rating on both the appliance and extension cord. Do not plug one extension cord to another.
  • 5 Do not run electrical cords underneath rugs, carpets, or furniture. Walking on cords can break wiring and possibly cause a fire.
  • 6 Keep all electrical cords out of reach and out of sight to avoid children or pets from pulling appliances off tables or counters.

Indoor Safety

  • 1 If plugs seem to fit loosely into a wall outlet, the wall outlet needs repair. A loose fitting wall outlet may cause overheating. Call an electrician to examine the outlet.
  • 2 Use only extension cords that have been listed by a recognized certification organization.
  • 3 Make sure cords are in good condition - not frayed or cracked. Be sure they are placed out of traffic areas. Cords should never be nailed or stapled to the wall, baseboard, or to another object. In addition, cords should never have any furniture resting on them.
  • 4 Check to see that extension cords are not overheated. Additionally, extension cords should only be used on a temporary basis, as they are not safe as permanent household wiring.
  • 5 Check the wattage of all light bulbs in lighting fixtures to make sure they are the correct wattage for the size of the fixture. Replace bulbs that have higher wattage than recommended. The correct wattage can be found in the owner's manual. Make sure bulbs are screwed in securely because loose bulbs may overheat.
  • 6 If one appliance repeatedly blows a fuse or trips a circuit breaker, or if it has emitted an electric shock, the appliance should be unplugged and repaired or replaced.

Outdoor Safety

  • 1 Turn off electrical products if a cord overheats.
  • 2 Use only weather-resistant heavy gauge extension cords marked, "For Outdoor Use."
  • 3 Outdoor electrical products should be 1) plugged in and turned on only when in use; 2) never left unattended outdoors; 3) turned off when being carried or being hooked up to attachments like mower baskets or saw blades.
  • 4 Keep outdoor outlets and electrical products covered and dry between uses.