At this time of year and with farm activities in full swing, ESB Networks is asking farm families to be extra vigilant. At this busy time, there is a worrying upturn in farming accidents associated with overhead electricity wires. These accidents happen when working too close to overhead electricity wires, hedge and tree-cutting jobs, using tall machinery or moving high loads.

Take a few minutes to remind yourself, your family, contractors, neighbours and visitors of these important safety messages. Know the electricity risks on your farm. Always look up and look out when planning and carrying out all jobs on the farm. Never take chances with electricity, you might not get a second one.

Working near overhead power lines

1 Typical farm machinery can easily come too close to overhead electricity wires.

  • Keep a safe distance of at least 3m when using forage harvesters, combine harvesters, tipping trailers and moving high loads.
  • Ensure that poles, earth wires and stay-wires are not damaged.
  • A changed farm layout can mean overhead wires become a hazard; contact ESB Networks for advice.
  • 2 Hedge-cutting and tree-cutting near overhead electricity wires:

  • Hedge-cutting and tree-cutting have caused some very serious electrical accidents.
  • Don’t take a chance – stop and call ESB Networks first.
  • ESB Networks emergency number

    Save it in your phone today:

    1800 372 999 (24-hour/seven-day service)

    For more information, visit: stayingsafe.

    Always report damage

    Always report any damage immediately. Making contact with overhead electricity wires, or even coming close to them, puts you at serious risk of injury or death from electrocution. Electricity from power lines can jump gaps, so you don’t need to make contact to be seriously injured.

    Are you aware of the electrical risks?

  • DO: farm safely with electricity
  • Look up and look out for overhead wires, poles and stays. Plan ahead to reduce the risk.
  • Ensure that neither you nor your equipment comes too close to electricity wires.
  • Be careful using irrigating equipment, rain guns and sprinklers or spreading slurry. You could be electrocuted if liquid comes too close to the wires.
  • Be aware of poles and stay wires and steer clear to avoid damaging them.
  • Check out the ESB Networks Farm Safely with Electricity booklet for farm safety tips at
  • DON’T: take chances with electricity
  • Do not work too close to overhead power lines.
  • Do not raise wide spray booms, tipper lorries, cranes, ladders, scaffolding or telescopic handlers near overhead wires.
  • Portable grain augers are a particular risk due to their operating height.
  • Did you know

    If you need to get a new electricity connection for your farm you can now do this online. For more information, see: www. connections/farm-premises