Press Release

For National Electrical Safety Month, PSEG Long Island Encourages Customers to Work and Play Safely at Home

(UNIONDALE, N.Y. – May 20, 2020)  May is National Electrical Safety Month. With millions more Americans working and learning from home, PSEG Long Island reminds its customers to be careful and responsible with electronics and appliances.

“Safety is always our top priority. We encourage people to enjoy all of the comforts and convenience of electricity while paying attention to and avoiding potential hazards,” said John O’Connell, PSEG Long Island’s vice president of Transmission and Distribution Operations. “This is the perfect time of year to perform routine checks in homes and businesses to prevent electrical shocks, injuries and fires. Also, taking the time to brush up on emergency safety tips can save lives.”

According to Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI), electrical malfunctions account for 35,000 home fires each year, causing more than 1,130 injuries, 500 deaths, and $1.4 billion in property damage. The average American home was built in 1977, according to the ESFI, and many existing homes simply can't handle the demands of today's electrical appliances and devices.

Created by ESFI, this year’s Electrical Safety Month theme is “Smart Home,” which focuses on lifesaving devices that keep a home smart and secure by protecting against various electric faults and surges. The annual effort seeks to help reduce electrically-related fatalities, injuries and property loss. Among other free resources, ESFI released this safety video in conjunction with the month.

PSEG Long Island encourages customers to learn the warning signs of an overloaded electrical system:

  • Frequent tripping of circuit breakers or blowing of fuses
  • Dimming of lights when other devices are tuned on
  • Buzzing sound from switches or outlets
  • Discolored outlets
  • Appliances that seem underpowered

ESFI offers the following tips on how to avoid overloading circuits

  • Label circuit breakers to understand the different circuits in your home
  • Have homes inspected by a qualified electrician if older than 40 years or has had a major appliance installed
  • Have a qualified electrician install new circuits for high energy use devices
  • Reduce electrical load by using energy-efficient appliances and lighting

PSEG Long Island offers these additional tips to help customers stay safe:

  • Do not handle electric appliances with wet or damp hands, and never use electric appliances in wet or damp conditions, unless the appliances are specifically rated for that use.
  • If there are small children or pets around, make sure unused wall outlets have safety coverings. All outlets within reach should be protected with plastic closures that fit snugly and cannot be removed easily.
  • Inspect all appliances and extension cords regularly to ensure that they are in good condition. Cords should not be frayed or damaged. Ensure that cords don’t run under rugs or have furniture resting on them.
  • Never pour water on an electric fire, as water acts as a conductor and can cause shock. A fire extinguisher that is rated as Class C should be used for electric fires.
    Locate smoke detectors on the ceiling away from air vents and near bedrooms. Test smoke detector every few months to ensure they’re working and change the batteries every spring and fall when the clocks change.
  • Never touch a downed wire or go near one. Always assume the power line is live and call PSEG Long Island at 800-490-0075 to report downed wires.

The safety of PSEG Long Island’s employees and customers is always the top priority. The company offers a “Sesame Street” safety education program for children, as well as more information on home electric safety at

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PSEG Long Island
PSEG Long Island operates the Long Island Power Authority’s transmission and distribution system under a long-term contract. PSEG Long Island is a subsidiary of Public Service Enterprise Group Inc. (PSEG) (NYSE:PEG), a publicly traded diversified energy company.