Media Release

Truck carrying dirt

Essential Energy urges vigilance as truck and high load incidents pass 50 for 2019

31 May 2019 

Essential Energy is encouraging drivers transporting high loads to plan their route and know their clearances after more than 50 incidents caused by trucks and heavy machinery hitting the electricity network so far this year.

An Essential Energy spokesperson said it was critical for drivers to know their vehicle height and the minimum clearance distances required when travelling under or near the overhead electricity network.

“We’re averaging more than 10 incidents per month across the Essential Energy footprint involving high loads or heavy machinery.

“Not only do these incidents pose a threat to the personal safety to the drivers they also have the potential to impact the safety of the public and cause unnecessary power supply outages."

Essential Energy recommends drivers plan a travel path that maintains required powerline clearances. If the height of the load is more than 4.6 metres, carriers must contact Essential Energy on 132391 to verify powerline heights.

“Drivers should visually check all powerlines for damaged or low wires before passing under them,” they said.

“Powerlines can sag in extreme heat or sway in the wind and, therefore, reduce the clearance required for high vehicles to safely pass underneath.

“Pay particular attention to service lines as they often decrease in height where they connect to houses or cross roads.”

If your vehicle does contact overhead powerlines, call Essential Energy immediately on 132080 or emergency services (000) if the situation is life threatening. Remain calm and stay in the vehicle until the power has been isolated and the wires removed.

“Always treat powerlines and anything in contact with them as live and advise anyone near the incident to stay at least eight metres clear."

For more electrical safety information, visit

Media contact: Nick Kaiser, PR and Media Specialist
Tel: 0411 485 204

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  • Essential Energy builds, operates and maintains one of Australia’s largest electricity distribution networks, servicing regional, rural and remote NSW, and parts of southern Queensland.
  • Our footprint covers 95 percent of NSW, traversing 737,000 square kilometres of landmass with 183,612 km of powerline.
  • The network services more than 855,000 customers with approximately 4.6 customers to each kilometre of powerline, which is almost one-tenth the customer density compared with our counterparts in NSW.
  • Essential Energy’s footprint also includes 1.38 million power poles servicing, equating to 1.6 power poles per customer.