Whetstone Valley Electric Cooperative reported four farm machinery and power line accidents in May. One caused an outage for 36 customers. WVEC personnel repaired the damage and restored electrical service, but according to Dave Page, general manager of WVEC, lines carry more than 7000 volts and it’s fortunate that no one was injured.
Larger equipment and automation could be contributing to the increased number of incidents. Farmers are seeding more ground and equipment is continuing to get bigger. Page said, “Sometimes machinery gets close to electrical structures and operators need to be especially attentive when using automated steering systems.”
If an electrical pole or equipment is hit by farm machinery or vehicles, it’s important to call WVEC, even if it doesn’t appear to be damaged. A pole that has been compromised by an impact could give way later causing an outage, injury, or death. Reporting it could save a life.