BECi Reminds Members to Plug Into Safety

BECi Reminds Members to Plug Into Safety

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BECi Reminds Members to Plug Into Safety

DeRidder— In May, electric cooperatives across the country promote safety awareness to coincide with National Electrical Safety Month. Every year, thousands of accidents occur due to shock hazards, and Beauregard Electric Cooperative, Inc. (BECi), a not-for-profit electric utility, is committed to educating the public about potential electrical dangers.

In 2016, 475,500 structure fires (including residential fires) were reported in the U.S., causing 2,950 deaths, 12,775 injuries and $7.9 billion in property damage. According to the National Fire Protection Association, a residential fire was reported every 90 seconds. Many home fires occur when electrical equipment is outdated or improperly used.

It is critical that the public understands their home’s electrical system and the safety concerns associated with the latest residential technologies before bringing them into their homes. With newer technologies and more electrical gadgets in the home, people need to ensure they have an electrical system that is compatible with the increased load. It is also important that the public remember to practice electrical safety in everyday situations, especially during thunderstorms.

Here are five tips to remember:

  1. Do not use extension cords or power strips with fans or heaters. This could cause the cord to overheat and result in fire.
  2. Know the signs of overloaded outlets like warm or discolored outlet covers, burning odor from receptacles, a mild shock or tingle when touching appliances or switches and frequently tripped breakers.
  3. During a thunderstorm, bring pets inside. Doghouses are not lightning-safe and chained dogs can easily be victim to lightning.
  4. Do not use corded or landline phones and avoid contact with water, faucets, sinks and baths during a thunderstorm.
  5. If you are in your car and come in contact with a downed power line, stay in your car and tell others to stay away. If you must leave your car due to fire, jump out of the car with both feet together and shuffle away from the vehicle.

Through electrical safety awareness and education, we can all play a part in preventing electrical hazards and injuries in the future. Together, let’s plug into safety this May.

BECi is the distribution cooperative that serves the electric needs of more than 40,000 residential, commercial and industrial members in a 7-parish area of southwest and central Louisiana.

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