UPPCO offers snow removal safety tips

MARQUETTE – The Upper Peninsula Power Co. is reminding customers to stay safe as they remove snow this winter, and to always be aware of where power lines and meters are.

In a press release, UPPCO suggests public or private snowplowing services should use caution when moving snow near utility services and meters, primarily meters near businesses. Plowing heavy snow onto meters could damage them, resulting in a loss of electricity and exposure to energized electrical parts, creating a safety hazard.

Other suggestions include:

  • Large snow piling accumulations should be avoided around overhead lines where children may play and climb onto the snow piles, bringing them in close proximity of the lines.
  • If meters become covered with heavy snow, customers should clear them by hand without heavy shovels, rakes or other items.
  • Customers who choose to clear their roof of snow using shovels or rakes should be extremely cautious when working near power lines. When clearing the roof, take care not to shovel or rake the snow onto meters, which could be damaged.
  • UPPCO is also cautioning customers about icicles that can form as the sun melts snow. When larger icicles break off, they could cause damage to the meter, exposing energized electrical parts, creating a safety hazard as well as interrupting electrical service.
  • UPPCO does not have automated meter reading, so the meter needs to be accessible to avoid estimated billings.

Jackie Stark can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 242. Her email address is jstark@miningjournal.net