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Powerful safety message for children in Breckland

Hundreds of school children from the Breckland district will be learning about the potential dangers of electricity next week.

From Press releases - 4 March 2015 12:00 AM

Hundreds of school children from the Breckland district will be learning about the potential dangers of electricity next week.

Safety advisers from UK Power Networks, which owns and operates the electricity networks in the East of England, London and the South East, work across the regions helping people to stay safe. They are meeting 11-year-old schoolchildren from 27 schools in the district at a Crucial Crew event at Letton Hall in Shipdham.

The event, organised by Norfolk Fire & Rescue’s community safety team, runs from Monday (March 9) to Thursday (March 12) and also involves emergency services and other agencies promoting key safety messages.

The company uses an interactive “ghost box” storytelling device to tell why you must not go into electricity substations or ignore “danger” signs. The stories include that of a boy electrocuted after ignoring warning signs and retrieving his ball from a substation, plus the potential dangers of flying kites and carrying fishing rods near high voltage power lines.

Ros Forbes, UK Power Networks public safety and education adviser, said: “Fortunately accidents are extremely rare but this is an exciting way of getting the safety message across, using six short, real-life scenarios, followed by a quiz that could help to save their lives.

“Schoolchildren have become more sophisticated and now require an exciting device that will engage them, capture their imaginations and keep them involved in the learning process. Our ghost box models were specially made for us and, using an old music hall technique involving semi-silvered mirrors, giving the impression of the ghosts’ heads floating in front of a street scene. 

“It helps them to understand how dangerous electricity can be if it’s not treated with respect, and it enables them to make the decisions that keep them safe.”

UK Power Networks runs a Power Up website to help raise awareness of these issues amongst schools and educational groups. It is aimed at students aged seven to 16 and is packed full of fun facts, quizzes, downloads and useful information and resources for teachers and parents in line with the National Curriculum.

Did you know?
• High-voltage electricity can jump across gaps - keep well clear and stay safe
• Human bodies contain 70% water - and water conducts electric current really well. You could get an electric shock and might even die.
• Electricity in the home can also be dangerous if you don't respect it
• Electricity will always find the easiest path to the ground – always carry fishing rods, ladders or any other long objects horizontally
• If you are out an about enjoying recreational activities such as kite flying or fishing always remember Look Up! Look Out! Check for overhead electricity wires
• Electricity can kill. Don’t ignore the warning signs