Oncor Urges: Be Careful with Power Tools! -- This Father's Day, remind Dad to follow power tool instructions for safety

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Every year on Father’s Day, many children decide to give Dad just what gets his motor running — new power tools. It’s easy to forget that these tools use potentially dangerous (if not used correctly) electricity and moving parts. Oncor wants to remind everyone to follow safety rules when using that power tool for the first time and every time.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has reported that 8 percent of accidental electrocutions in the United States each year are related to small appliances. Another 7 percent are attributed to power tools, and 4 percent are linked to lawn, garden and farming equipment.

Prior to using any power tool, new or old, the tool should be inspected to ensure that it has been certified by a recognized testing laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories Inc. (UL), CSA International or ITS. A tag or label placed somewhere on the tool should indicate this and will also let you know if the tool is intended for outdoor use.

Cords on power tools should be checked to ensure that they are in good condition. Cords with cracks, frays or exposed wiring and copper should not be used as they could start a fire.

When using power tools, remember:

Never remove the safety guard or shields from electric-powered tools or appliances, like mowers and saws. Turn off and lock appliances when installing attachments such as mower baskets or saw blades. Always carry power tools by the handle, never by the cord. Instead, hold the tool by the insulated gripping surface to avoid electrical shock or damage to the tool. Never leave a power tool unattended, even temporarily. If there is a key, remove it. Put the tool where children cannot misuse it. Keep the power cord and extension cords out of way — not draped over a hedge or in the path of the mower, for example. Make sure extension cords are marked for outdoor use and rated for the power needs of your tools. Wear safety goggles and other protection as recommended by the equipment or tool manufacturer. Avoid loose clothing or jewelry that could get caught in moving parts. Never trim trees within 10 feet of power lines. Power saws, drills, hedge trimmers or other power tools should never be used near electric lines. Be careful when using power tools on top of ladders — ladders should never be used within 10 feet of power lines to avoid electric shock or worse. To find out more about Oncor's Lifetime of Safety campaign, visit http://www.oncor.com/safety.

Oncor is a regulated electric distribution and transmission business that uses superior asset management skills to provide reliable electricity delivery to consumers. Oncor operates the largest distribution and transmission system in Texas, providing power to 3 million electric delivery points over more than 102,000 miles of distribution and 14,000 miles of transmission lines. While Oncor is a subsidiary of Energy Future Holdings Corp., Oncor is a separate entity with a separate board that is comprised of a majority of independent directors.

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Megan Wright
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