Baltimore Gas and Electric today announced the beginning of its fifth annual BGE Wires Down Video Challenge to educate elementary school-aged children on the importance of practicing electrical safety. From Aug. 29 until Nov. 18, 2016, elementary school teachers (kindergarten through fifth grade) in public and private elementary schools across BGE’s electric service area are encouraged to work with their class to submit 30 to 45-second videos of their interpretation of BGE’s popular “Wires Down” electrical safety commercial. Entries have a chance to win between $1,000 and $10,000 to fund a school enrichment project. At least one winning school will be chosen as a winner from each participating county. Up to $34,000 will be awarded this year to winning schools with an additional $500 awarded to the submitting teacher from the first place winning school.
Originally produced in 2000, the Emmy Award-winning BGE “Wires Down” commercial with its “do not, do not, do not touch” melody aims to help raise awareness of electricity hazards, especially among young children. Last year’s $10,000 grand prize winning school, Krieger Schechter Day School, used the funding to install scientific discovery tools for their playground to include outdoor equipment that demonstrates scientific principles such as swings, balance ramps and gears and an outdoor shed which would house magnifying glasses, measuring tools and butterfly nets.
To date, BGE has awarded $111,000 to 33 elementary schools across central Maryland as part of the BGE Wires Down Video Challenge. For more information on the contest, to download your free entry kit or to view last year’s winning video, visit bgevideochallenge.com.
Public and private elementary schools in the BGE service area are also welcome to schedule free, in-person safety demonstrations from BGE safety experts who arrive in real utility bucket trucks or other service vehicles. To schedule a demonstration, please email our community affairs team at BGEEducationalOutreach@bge.com.
BGE reminds all customers to stay away from power lines and report any downed power lines or electrical emergencies immediately by calling 800.685.0123. Follow these safety guidelines:
- Assume that all overhead wires are energized at lethal voltages. Never assume that a wire is safe to touch even if it is down, appears to be insulated or if power is out at nearby premises.
- Never touch a fallen overhead power line. Call BGE at 1.800.685.0123 to report fallen electric lines.
- Keep yourself and equipment at least 10 feet away from overhead wires during cleanup and other activities.
- If working at heights or handling long objects, survey the area before starting work for the presence of overhead wires.
- Avoid touching anything that may be in contact with an overhead wire like tree limbs or other debris.
- If an overhead wire falls across your vehicle while you are driving, stay inside the vehicle and continue to drive away from the line. If the engine stalls, do not leave your vehicle. Warn people not to touch the vehicle or the wire. Call or ask someone to call emergency services.
- Never operate electrical equipment while you are standing in water.
- Never repair electrical cords or equipment unless qualified and authorized.
- Have a qualified electrician inspect electrical equipment that has gotten wet before energizing it.
- If working in damp locations, inspect electric cords and equipment to ensure that they are in good condition and free of defects, and use a ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI).
- Always use caution when working near electricity.