Ergon Energy is urging property owners planning burn-offs to be mindful of electrical infrastructure to prevent damage.

Regional Field Manager Southern, Max Hogan, said damage to power poles from burn-offs could be expensive to repair and cause extended power supply interruptions to customers in neighbouring areas.

Mr Hogan said the risk of damage to the network from seasonal burn-off operations on rural properties could be mitigated if acreage owners, farmers and graziers took a few simple precautions:

-Clear around the base of poles before you burn off
-Don’t burn too close to poles or powerlines
-After a burn-off, check that power poles have not been damaged or left smouldering or in danger of catching alight

“These small steps will make a big difference to the continuous supply of electricity to your area,” Mr Hogan said.

“Property owners should also be aware they can be liable for the repair costs if their negligence results in damage to Ergon’s poles or wires.”

Mr Hogan said that although the bushfire season begun on 1 August, there had already been a number of bushfires in rural areas and crews were ready to respond to any damage to the network as soon as it was safe to do so.

“When an area is impacted by bushfire, we ask landowners to promptly check for any damage to poles and wires as part of their property inspection.

“In some cases, this can allow us to carry out any repairs required before they cause an outage, limiting the inconvenience to the local community,’’ Mr Hogan said.

Mr Hogan reminded landowners of their obligation to acquire a permit to burn from Queensland Fire and Emergency Services for any burn-off activity.

He said property owners with private poles should take the same precautions when burning off, otherwise they may need to engage a licenced electrical contractor to repair any damage.

Chris is a publishing veteran, having launched more than ten magazines over the course of his career. As the Publisher of Utility, his role today is more hands-off, but every now and then he likes to jump back on the tools and flex his wordsmithing muscles.

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