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Gas and electricity risks during extreme weather events

Victoria’s energy safety regulator, Energy Safe Victoria, provides the following advice for households who are without power as a severe weather event continues across Victoria.

Using a generator

  • If you are using a generator, do not attempt to connect it to the wiring of your home. This is dangerous and illegal. Electrical work can only be carried out by licensed electricians.
  • A generator should only be used outside, with an extension cord to supply power direct to appliances such as the fridge or freezer. Using a generator indoors creates a number of safety risks including the potential for carbon monoxide poisoning or fire.

Supply has been restored but I still have no power

  • Households still without power after electricity supply has been restored should seek the help of their electricity distributor. Check the ESV website if you are unsure of your distributor.
  • The problem could be a fault in the supply line to the property, or a fault within the property’s electrical installation.
  • If there are continuing power supply problems, contact a registered electrical contractor. Only electricians licensed by Energy Safe Victoria can perform electrical work.

Appliances

  • When there is a power cut, make sure heating and cooking appliances are turned off (there is a risk of fire if they come back on and there is no one at the property).

Fallen Powerlines

  • Stay more than eight-to-10 metres away from fallen powerlines. Standing near fallen powerlines can be fatal.
  • Always treat fallen powerlines as live even when they are broken.

Outdoor Gas Appliances

  • Using outdoor gas appliances, such as portable camping and patio heaters, inside is unsafe and can significantly increase the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning and other health hazards.
  • All gas appliances require fresh air to operate and ventilation to allow the products of combustion to escape.

In the case of emergencies, household are advised to contact their electricity or gas distributor. Relevant contact details can be found on electricity bills or on our website.

Media contact: Adrian Bernecich 0437 729 194 | adrian.bernecich@energysafe.vic.gov.au