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Think before you drill

Every year people are killed or seriously injured in incidents involving underground electricity cables. Worryingly, the number of people accidentally drilling into electricity service cables, or hitting the service cables when digging is on a steady rise. The risk is particularly prevalent to those working in the construction industry.

One simple mistake can result in life-changing burns or worse, but one simple step can save you from the danger lurking hidden behind walls and floors. At the beginning of any drilling or digging work, take a moment to accurately locate service cables buried underground or within walls. In a nutshell simply ‘think before you drill’.

UK Power Networks has created the 'Think before you drill' initiative to remind those working in the construction industry to work safe, use their cable locating tools and think electricity! The company knows a thing or two about electrical health and safety, with its vast cable networks delivering more than a quarter of the UK's electricity, making sure the lights stay on across London, the South East and the East of England.

There really is no excuse for skipping a simple step, which could save your life. So the next time you are on site and think about cutting corners, remind yourself that your family want you home that night, your friends need you in their lives and that one small mistake can change everything.

This short video shows what happened when a construction worker using a jackhammer cut into an 11,000 volt cable. This took place on site at the House of Lords in December 2015. Both men were seriously burned, one scarred for life after he suffered burns to his arms, legs, hands and face. Two construction companies were fined £90,000:

Check out The UK Power Networks website to download the following safety leaflets:

Digging safely underground

General safety leaflet 

You can find more electrical safety leaflets online at: