Illustration of powerline falling on car after a crash

Powerlines can come down because of severe weather, such as freezing rain and high winds, or as a result of a vehicle hitting a hydro pole. For your safety, it's important you know what to do.

horizontal bar What to do if powerlines come down on your car infographic

To stay safe, follow these steps:

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  1. Stay in the vehicle
    Always assume a downed powerline is live and that the ground around it may be electrified.
    • If you can drive out from under it, drive slowly until you're a least 10 metres
      (about the length of a school bus) away. Then call 9-1-1.
    • If you can't move the vehicle, stay inside and call 9-1-1.
      Wait for Toronto Hydro crews to make the area safe.
  2. If you must escape the vehicle
    If another immediate danger arises, such as a fire, follow these steps to escape:
    • Jump (don't step) out of the car - be sure to land with both feet together.
    • As you jump, be sure not to touch the car and the ground at the same time.
    • Shuffle at least 10 metres away from the car.
    • Call 9-1-1.
  3. If you're a bystander
    Stay at least 10 meters away as the wires can electrify the ground.

    Remember that downed powerlines should be treated as live wires
    as they may be carrying power that can electrify the ground.