Eskom Cautions Against Posters on Electric Poles for Elections

Eskom Warns Political Parties of Electrocution Risk During Campaign

by Ikeoluwa Juliana Ogungbangbe

Eskom, South Africa’s electricity company, has sent a strong warning to all political parties on where to put their campaign posters as the country gets ready for the general elections scheduled for May 29, 2024. The business is issuing a warning against the possibly fatal practice of attaching election-related goods to electrical structures, such as tiny sub-stations, poles, towers, and meter boxes.

This warning is in reaction to earlier instances where people trying to hang posters from these buildings were electrocuted, resulting in significant injuries or even fatalities. The risk of an unintentional flash-over or direct electrical contact arises from any proximity to or contact with these electrically charged installations, according to Eskom.

“Electricity is invisible to the naked eye, and the risk is that when someone gets close to or touches them, it may result in inadvertent flash-over or electrical contact,” Eskom explained in a statement released over the weekend. This warning is emphasized by historical data showing that such accidents have occurred during past election cycles, leading to severe injuries and deaths.

Eskom has issued a reminder that climbing or working on these electrical structures is only allowed for authorized workers. The business stressed the potential legal repercussions of such behavior, pointing out that it is illegal to affix posters to electrical structures in violation of Section 19(5) of the Electrical Machinery Regulations. This rule forbids crossing the minimum safety distances required near power lines without the owner’s or operator’s express consent.

The behavior not only violates the Occupational Health and Safety Act (No 85 of 1993), but it also puts employees, volunteers, and members of the public at serious risk, according to Eskom, which further emphasized the wider ramifications of such violations. “Your precious employees, members of the public, and volunteers are at risk when posters are attached to an electrical structure,” the statement read.

The power utility’s warning urges adherence to safety regulations in order to safeguard people from the risks associated with electrical infrastructure, with the goal of ensuring that the election season passes without needless accidents or injuries. The public’s and campaigners’ safety is still a top priority as the election draws near, and Eskom is leading the push to promote ethical and secure campaigning methods.

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