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Friday, September 30, 2022

Ocala firefighters assist motorist who drove over downed power lines

Firefighters assisted a motorist last week who inadvertently drove over downed power lines in southwest Ocala.

According to Ocala Fire Rescue, on Friday, July 15, shortly before 7:50 p.m., units were dispatched to SW 38th Street and SW 60th Avenue due to reports of power lines and poles that were on the ground as a result of inclement weather.

OFR’s Engine 1 and Engine 6 were sent to investigate similar calls at opposite ends of SW 60th Avenue. Engine 1 encountered several lines, including a traffic light, that were down, but there was no immediate danger.

However, when Engine 6 arrived on scene, crew members observed a car that was parked over power lines that were on the ground. The driver of the vehicle was still inside.

Firefighters assist motorist who drove over downed power lines in Ocala
Firefighters observed a vehicle that had driven over downed power lines (Photo courtesy of C. Maxson)

Crew members immediately contacted the electric company. As soon as the power lines were de-energized, they proceeded to assist the driver with safely exiting the vehicle.

No injuries were reported.

OFR is reminding drivers that if they ever find themselves in a vehicle that has made contact with power lines, it is critical to stay inside the vehicle and call 9-1-1.

Energized power lines can carry a strong enough current to cause injuries ranging from serious to lethal. Anyone who encounters a downed power line should assume that it is energized – report it and remain a minimum of 10 feet away.

For a complete list of safety tips regarding downed power lines, visit the Electrical Safety Foundation International’s Power Lines Safety Tips webpage.