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PARENTS URGED TO REMIND YOUNGSTERS TO STAY SAFE THIS SUMMER

As lockdown continues to ease and some youngsters may start going out and about more in their local community over the summer months, Northern Powergrid is asking parents and guardians to take a minute to talk with their loved ones about the dangers of playing near the region's electricity network.

With more than 60,000 miles of overhead lines and underground cables and 63,000 substations powering everyday life for millions of people across the North East, Yorkshire and northern Lincolnshire, Northern Powergrid is recommending that parents spend just five minutes reminding their children to stay away from electrical equipment if they’re playing outdoors.

Geoff Earl, director of safety, health and environment at Northern Powergrid, said: “With ‘home schooling’ lessons officially coming to a close and the lockdown easing some children may be venturing out more in the weeks and months ahead.  While many things are very different in our world at the moment - one thing that remains the same is the importance of staying safe and staying away from our power network, which plays a vital role in powering homes, hospitals, businesses and communities.

"It’s essential that young people are reminded of the dangers of power lines and substations and understand that interfering, accidentally or otherwise, with any part of our electricity network could potentially prove fatal.  That's why we’re asking all parents and guardians to spend just a few minutes chatting with their children about the potential hazards so they know what to do should they see anything hanging from our power lines or they accidentally fly a drone or kick a ball into an electricity pole, pylon or substation.”

"Trying to retrieve items themselves could ultimately prove fatal. We want young people to know that if they spot anything potentially unsafe or need help to safely retrieve something they can call 105. Our 24-hour contact centre team will be happy to send an electricity rapid responder who has the expert training and necessary specialist equipment need to go near equipment which is carrying thousands of volts. By doing the right thing they can ensure they remain safe this summer.”

Northern Powergrid website has a free safety booklet which parents can use to help their children learn key safety messages, As part of its education site there are also a suite of education resources to help deliver science, technology, engineering, maths, (STEM) and citizenship lessons to seven to 14 year olds. The free resource materials, available on northernpowergrid.com, have been designed to get youngsters engaged in hands-on activities from budgeting household energy costs and renewable energy to exploring social and environmental considerations for the future and power network planning. The resources bring STEM subjects to life, encouraging pupils to engage in learning and inspiring them to consider careers in the energy sector.

Parents can also show their children a safety video about doing the right thing where youngster Jack Dalton got his dad to phone Northern Powergrid’s contact centre when his kite got caught in a power line https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iXH5hAxn95U&feature=youtu.be

Northern Powergrid’s safe working practices and robust operating protocols have meant that network operator has remained there for its customers 24/7, 365 days a year powering businesses, homes, hospitals and supermarkets during the peak of the pandemic and beyond into the next stages.  As lockdown continues to gradually ease, the company is using its updated protocols so it can also deliver its next key role; supporting economic recovery in the weeks and months ahead.

Anyone needing support in a power cut can contact the network operator 24/7 on social media (Facebook or Twitter @NorthPowergrid) or by calling 105.  Its website also provides information and advice to support customers if they have or need to report a power cut.

Any customers who may need additional advice or support due to their medical circumstances, or are still ‘shielding’ in line with medical advice, can join the company’s free Priority Services Register by visiting northernpowergrid.com/cares  or calling 0800 169 2296.

To find out more about how Northern Powergrid and its people are continuing to safely power the region during the pandemic visit northernpowergrid.com/coronavirus or follow the network operator on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram.