Safety Information

NRLP cares about the safety of you and your family. Electricity is a safe and reliable source of energy; however, it has the potential to be hazardous if not used with caution. We encourage you to review these safety tips and share them with family and friends.

Call Before You Dig!

Before you dig, please call NRLP at 828-264-8621 to avoid damaging utilities and to prevent costly repairs.

Let us know the following:

  • Address
  • When you plan to dig
  • Reason for digging

New River Light & Power will be able to locate your lines within 48 hours.

Outdoor Safety

  • Before you dig up your yard, ask NRLP for the location of underground lines.
  • Don't plant tall-growing trees under power lines. If power lines are running through a tree, stay away from it. Call NRLP to get it trimmed.
  • Keep brushy shrubs away from your meter.
  • Carry tall items like ladders parallel to the ground and keep away from power lines.
  • Stay aware of the weather. Lightning is a giant spark of electricity that can pose a danger to people, animals, structures, and natural features. When you hear thunder roar, get indoors! Visit the National Weather Service for more information on outdoor and indoor lightning safety.

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Emergency Safety

  • Always have an emergency plan and kit. For help planning, visit's build-a-kit website
  • If you have an electrical fire, unplug the appliance or turn off the main power switch. Use a CO2 fire extinguisher or plain baking soda to put it out. Never use water to put out an electrical fire. Call 911 immediately.
  • Turn off the power source if you can, or use a wooden object, dry rope or dry clothing to separate the victim from the power source.
  • Do NOT touch a person who has been shocked.
  • Make sure your children stay away from substation fences and pad-mounted transformers. And if you see a fence or transformer cabinet that has been vandalized, call New River Light and Power.
  • Teach your children to look for "Danger" signs displayed on all high voltage equipment.
  • If a power line falls on your car, stay inside. If your car catches fire, jump clear of the car, and do not touch metal and ground at the same time.
  • If you see a downed power line, call New River Light and Power immediately. If someone has come in contact with a power line, call New River Light and Power and an ambulance immediately. Do not go near the power line or attempt to move the victim.
  • For more information on power line safety, visit the Electrical Safety Foundation International's Overhead Power Line Safety page.  

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Home Safety

When the Power Goes Out

  • If you lose power in your home, first see if you have blown a fuse or tripped a circuit breaker.
  • Don't stand on a damp floor when resetting a circuit breaker.
  • Never replace a fuse with a copper penny or wrap one in aluminum foil.
  • If your power does not come on within a reasonable time, call New River Light and Power.

Keeping Appliances Safe

  • Keep your appliances in good shape. When they need repairs, call a qualified service person. When an electrical cord gets worn or frayed, replace the appliance.
  • Always unplug appliances (by pulling the plug, not the cord) when they're not in use.
  • Use extension cords on a temporary basis only.
  • Never stick metal objects, like knives or forks, into your toaster.
  • Keep all appliances at a safe distance from water.

Water Hazards

  • Don't stand in water or on a damp floor when using appliances, and don't put electrical parts in water.
  • Never touch or lean on plumbing pipes while touching an appliance.
  • If you're putting a swimming pool in your yard, don't locate it under power lines.

Staying Grounded

  • Have a qualified electrical contractor inspect your home to make sure it is properly grounded.
  • Large appliances should have their own circuit and be grounded with a three-pronged plug.
  • Make sure outdoor electrical outlets are ground fault protected and have waterproof covers.

Portable Heater Safety

  • Keep space heaters away from flammable items like curtains, sheets or blankets.
  • Buy heaters that automatically shut off when knocked over.
  • Unplug the heater when not in use.

Power Tools Safety

  • Be sure your tools are adequate for the job. Circuits must be the right size and must be grounded.
  • Use the safety release to prevent accidental starting.
  • Keep your tools clean. Use and store them in a dry place, as dampness increases the possibility of shocks.
  • Protect cords from chemicals, gases or oil. Coil them loosely when finished.
  • When working outside, use only heavy-duty extension cords rated for outdoor use.
  • Never use an electric mower when the grass is wet.

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Electrical Safety for Children

  • Cover seldomly used outlets with plastic safety plugs.
  • Put safety covers on frequently used outlets that let appliance cords pass in and out.
  • Replace burned out bulbs immediately. Never leave sockets empty.
  • Keep small metal objects that kids could poke into outlets out of harm's way.
  • Put fans and portable heaters out of reach.
  • Never fly kites or model airplanes near power lines.
  • Only use dry string on kites, never wire or metal of any kind.
  • Don't release metallic balloons into the air. They can get caught in power lines and cause outages.
  • Let New River Light and Power untangle kites or balloons that get snagged on overhead lines.
  • Visit the Electrical Safety Foundation International's Kids Safety page for resources, games, and more to help teach kids all about electrical safety.

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Generator Safety

In a power outage, a generator can provide a great deal of comfort. It can be installed permanently or be portable for temporary use. Either way, a properly installed generator will protect electrical workers, your family, and your property.


  • Read all instructions on how to properly install your generator
  • Have your generator wired by an electrician
  • Use only the cords supplied by the manufacturer
  • Use ground-fault circuit interrupters
  • Follow all safety instructions
  • Keep your generator dry
  • Provide adequate ventilation during generator operation
  • Shut down your generator before refueling and check for damaged fuel lines
  • Keep flammable materials away from your generator
  • Keep children away from portable generators at all times


  • Attach your generator directly to the electrical system without a transfer switch or disconnect switch
  • Use indoors
  • Place near doors, windows, or vents
ElectriCities of North Carolina offers a short safety video on portable home generators.

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Holiday Safety

The winter holiday season is an exciting time of year filled with decorative displays and festive celebrations. Here are some basic steps you can take to protect your family and your home from electrical dangers during the holiday season.

  • Carefully inspect each electrical decoration for cracked or loose sockets and frayed or bare wires that may cause a serious shock or fire hazard.
  • Always unplug electrical decorations before replacing bulbs or fuses.
  • Keep children and pets away from all electrical decorations and outlets. If possible, place decorations out of reach.
  • Plug outdoor electrical decorations into circuits protected by ground-fault circuit interrupters (GFCI) to prevent electric shock.
  • Before using electrical products outside, make sure the products are marked "for outdoor use."
  • Keep all outdoor extension cords and light strings clear of snow and standing water.
  • When hanging decorations, do not connect more than three light strings together.
  • Avoid overloading electrical outlets and circuits, which can overheat and start a fire.
  • Never use electric lights on a metallic tree, which can become charged with electricity from faulty lights.
  • Use electrical decorations that are approved for safe use by a nationally-recognized testing laboratory such as Underwriters Laboratories, Canadian Standards Association, or Intertek.
  • Never nail or staple light strings or extension cords.
  • Use a dry, wooden ladder when hanging lights outdoors.
  • Finally, turn off all indoor and outdoor electrical decorations before leaving home or going to bed.

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Outdoor Area Lighting

light2020blooms20web.jpgOutdoor area lighting is available to all customers of New River to be used to light outdoor areas, private streets and/or driveways.

New River provides all materials, installs, operates, maintains, and provides the energy required for illumination of the lighting units from dusk to dawn. High-pressure sodium and metal halide lights are installed on company-owned wooden poles and are available on a goose-neck, cobra head or short arm. A monthly rate approved by the North Carolina Utilities Commission is charged for each fixture.

For information on new installation, call 828-264-8621.

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