NEWS & UPDATES
Safety Message From Sarawak Energy To House Owners Affected By Flood
31st December 2013, Kuching: Concerned over the safety of the public affected by floods, Sarawak Energy wishes to advise members of the public to take extra precautions, before, during and after the flood recedes to avoid accidents and fatality caused by electrical hazards associated with floods.
According to Sarawak Energy’s Chief Operating Officer, Mr Lu Yew Hung “For flooded areas, it is important for the public to stay away from power lines, electrical wires and installations. For houses anticipated to be affected by flood, the main switchboard should be switched off before water enters the house for the safety of the occupants.”
“Electrical appliances exposed to water can be extremely dangerous if re-energized without proper reconditioning or replacement. Flood damage to electrical equipment can sometimes be hidden; such as television sets, which can cause electric shock even after they have been unplugged. It is important not to use appliances or motors that have gotten wet unless they are declared safe by a qualified technician,” added Mr Lu.
Below are some safety measures that needed to be considered before, during and after the flood recedes:
Preparing for a Flood
If you are not sure whether your home is in an area of potential flood risk, check with the local authorities such as the District Office or Local Municipality or Drainage and Irrigation Department. In any area where immediate flooding is anticipated, it is essential to shut off all electrical power by turning off the main switchboard. If you have time before you evacuate your home or business, move as much electrical equipment as possible to floors or areas above the anticipated flood level. If needed, to engage a licensed contractor to remove fixed electrical appliances such as electric motor, fan and other heavy machineries from been affected by the anticipated floods.
It is important not only to be prepared for the flooding, but also to make preparations for normal living after the flood had subsided. Note: Always have a flashlight and batteries ready as flooding may occur at night.
During a Flood
- If flooding occurs or upon the advice from the authorities to immediately leave the building, please do so as water and live electrical wires can be a lethal combination.
- If you have not turned off your main power switch, do not attempt to turn it off once water has entered the building.
- Do not enter flooded basements or buildings that may contain energized electrical wiring or appliances, and do not touch damp walls.
- Do not go near or interfere with SESCO electrical installations which are submerged or affected by flood water.
- If you are boating in a flooded area avoid power lines, as the water level may cause the boat to be too close to the wires for safety. It is not advisable to travel by boat at night or when you do not have good vision on the location of power lines. Avoid getting too close to SESCO power lines or any electrical installations.
- Do not return to your home until you know it is safe or have been advised by the authorities that it is safe to do so.
After the Flood Recedes
If your home or business has been flooded, electrical hazards may exist long after the water recedes. Even if water is not visible in a building, the interior structure may be soaked and still present an electrical hazard. Do not enter flooded basements or buildings that may contain energized electrical wiring or electrical appliances. Stay clear of anything that could conduct an electric current such as metal pipes, metal ladders, and even damp wood.
Warning! When an electrical appliance or installation has been in water, it cannot be turned on again without risk of electrocution or fire.
- Exercise extreme caution when returning to your home or business after a flood. Do not assume that any part of a flooded electrical installation/ appliance is safe.
- If your electrical main switch was not turned off prior to evacuation, do not enter the building until a qualified electrician has determined it is safe to do so.
- If the main electrical switchboard / internal wiring is affected by the flood, customers may seek the service of any SESCO registered electrical contractor. The list may be obtained from SESCO Office.
- Do not attempt to connect any electrical appliances, which have been affected (totally or partly submerged) unless it is advised by a competent technician or electrical repair shop.
- Before switching ON the main supply, have a qualified electrician inspect all wiring. Even if your building is not flooded, the interior structure may be soaked and still be a conductor of electricity.
- If you plan to use a generator for backup power, make sure it and all connected equipment is in a dry and well-ventilated location.
- If in doubt or if there is any query, customer may seek help by calling Sarawak Energy’s Customer Care Centre which is operating 24 hours a day, 7 days a week or call SESCO local offices as follows:
CUSTOMER CARE CENTRE: 1300 88 3111
- Kuching: 082 333221
- Sri Aman: 083 321486
- Sarikei: 084 654242
- Betong: 083472102/ 01115441035
- Sibu: 084 334566
- Mukah: 0198177074
- Kapit: 084 796020/ 019 8595499
- Bintulu: 086331151
- Miri: 085 66111
- Limbang: 085 212079
- Lawas: 085 283405
To ensure safety to customers, Sarawak Energy through its subsidiary, Syarikat SESCO Berhad will switch off the electricity supply to the affected area without notice. The power supply will be restored to the affected area as soon as it is safe to do so. Sarawak Energy appreciates the patience and cooperation by members of the public during such situation as safety is of utmost importance.