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Storm safety warning as ‘luckiest man alive’ cheats death
Saturday 3rd March 2018 @ 19:07 by Nigel Skinner
Hyde Longdendale News Tameside

Tameside walker’s miraculous escape after coming into contact with live 11,000 volt cable


The North West’s power network operator, Electricity North West, has issued an urgent safety warning after a Tameside walker cheated death when he came into contact with a live 11,000 volt power line.

The power network for the region has been battling Storm Emma since Thursday night as wind and falling trees have damaged overhead power lines.

Despite restoring power to 23,000 homes across the North West region, trees and debris remains on a number of lines.

This afternoon a walker saw a large tree branch hanging from an overhead line in a row of trees in Mottram, Hyde, and attempted to remove it himself.

After ‘feeling a tingle’ he then called Electricity North West who immediately cut power to the line from its control room in Manchester and advised him to stay away from the cable.

‘How he avoided death is simply incredible’

Chris Fox, incident manager for Electricity North West said: “This has to be the luckiest man alive. Electricity can travel through things like branches and can kill instantly. It can also jump, so how he avoided death is simply incredible.

“He owes his life to a freak combination of circumstances which we still can’t quite fathom, including his gloves, his strong walking boots and the fact the branch must have been completely dry.

“Even so, we can’t believe he escaped unharmed. As soon as he contacted us we cut power to the line, and our specially-trained engineers and linesmen have attended the site to remove the branch.

“It is essential for anyone who sees lines down or debris touching lines to stay away and call the emergency power safety number 105 as soon as possible.

“This will put them straight through to their local network operator who can deal with the situation safely.”

Electricity North West has restored power to almost 23,000 properties affected by the weather since Thursday evening and engineers continue to clear up damaged equipment and finalise repairs.


MAIN PICTURE: Leave it to the experts – high winds and falling trees have brought down power cables. The public are asked to contact ENW immediately and call the emergency power number 105 plus to stay away if they see any power cables that have come down.