How to Survive a Downed Power Line Scenario

How to Survive a Downed Power Line Scenario
How to Survive a Downed Power Line Scenario

What is the FIRST Thing You Should Do if You Are in a Car Near a Downed Power Line?

  • Call 911
  • Stay in Car
  • Run Away
  • TEST
  • Keep Driving

Answer: Stay in Car

When it comes to car accident situations, most people respond based on instinct. That means they want to get out of the car and assess the damage, but that may be the worst thing anyone can do. Staying in your car is the first decision you have to make if you want to stay safe.

If a live power line touches your car, or even the ground around your car, you and your family could be in grave danger. If you stay in you car, you are safe for the time being because the rubber tires insulate you from shock. But what happens if you get out of your car in a panic without thinking?

As you exit your car and step on the ground, extremely high voltage can surge from the car frame through your body down to ground. I don’t have to tell you the end result! Even if the live wires are not touching your car, the power lines could be delivering enough high volvtage to the ground that stepping outside your car could kill you. But, that doesn’t mean it’s safe to drive over power lines either.


Stop the car, if it isn’t stopped already. Try to stay at least 35 ft. from the power lines. Stay in your car as long as it is safe to do so, and warn others to do the same. Call 911 and follow the steps outlined in the video to get out of the car safely, if need be.

Although you don’t think you will ever encounter one of these situations, if you do, these 5 steps could save the lives of you and your family.

How to survive a downed power line scenario