What to do when you see a Downed Power Line

What to do when you see a Downed Power Line

Southern Maryland is no surprise to downed power lines. You never know, you might be the lucky one that has to deal with it on the road or you might be the only outsider that can help. Obviously, this is not something to handle recklessly.

Here are some tips to call to mind if this not so favorable situation just happens to land on your lap:

Landed on Lucy

¨What the %&$?! Just happened? A power line just landed on Lucy!¨

Ok, try to calm down. Your first reaction is to get out of your car and check for how much damage just occurred to your baby. But that technically can be a total fatal move.

What to do:

  1. Stay Put – Only if your car is not burning with flames. The power lines can charge your car with electrical current and so if you get out, Lucy will actually be saying goodbye to you. Make sure you communicate quickly to any passengers to not move as one faulty touch can affect everyone.
  2. Do not touch the inside of the car- any part of the car frame should be avoided so keep your hands to yourself.
  3. Call for help – Use your cell phone to call 911 and follow their specific instructions
  4. Outsiders cannot touch the car- Make sure you use all efforts to get the message across for passerby´s not to touch your car. If you happen to not carry a cell phone ask them to call for you.
  5. Don’t worry, your almost safe – Once the police arrive, leave it to them to solve the problem and follow their instructions until they tell you, you can exit your car.

Power pole falls in front of a Southern Maryland residents´car.

The Roof is on Fire

What to do:

  1. Is it a real fire or just exhaust – Smoke won’t disappear quickly but exhaust will fade into the air. Obviously, if you see flames, get out!!
  2. Open the door with only touching plastic frame of the door. The metal parts of the car will be charge with electricity so it is absolutely important that you don´t touch any metal parts to avoid electrocution.
  3. Jump out of the car – You cannot step out of the car as usual. Bring your legs together and have them tucked towards your body. Turn your body in a way that your feet do not touch the metal framing at the bottom. Cross your arms to make your body as small as possible so you are ready to jump out.
  4. How to jump – As your legs are together, jump out of the car and land both feet on the ground at the same time to reduce your chances of getting electrocuted. Your body should be in the air when you jump out of the car.
  5. Hop away – hop as fast as you can, keeping both feet on the ground at the same time. Making sure your feet touch the ground at the same time avoids being electrocuted.
  6. 50 feet to 15.2 M away – once you are about 50 feet away from the car call 911. Follow their instructions and make sure other observers don´t approach the car as you keep your distance away from the car.

Be the Samaritan

If you are the witness of what just happened, there are things you can do. First of all, keep your distance away from the car, about 50 feet away. Your safety is first priority from helping others. Start yelling to the person in the vehicle and make sure they know they should not touch anything and to stay in the car if there are no flames. Assure them quickly that police is coming as you start making the call. If the car is on fire, give them instructions of how to jump out of the car to avoid being electrocuted. Also, assure them the police are coming so they try not to go into panic mode.  If there are other bystanders, make sure they know not to approach the car. Once you talk to the police and relay the details wait for arrival before you decide to leave the scene.

Smart Reaction is the Key

In situations like these, it is very important you try to keep calm and to remember the car can be easily charged with electricity. Keeping in good communication with other car passengers will help keep the situation non-fatal. We hope it doesn’t happen to you, but it is also beneficial to know what to do if your the one who draws the red straw.



Things to do in Mechanicsville Maryland

Things to do in Mechanicsville Maryland

I have lived in Mechanicsville for years. It’s true, I didn’t grow up here. I moved from Michigan when we got married. At first Mechanicsville didn’t impress me. I was comparing it to “home.” It’s never fair to compare. In Michigan you’re surrounded by lakes everywhere you turn.  It’s a tourist area.  But once I opened my eyes to the area around me in Mechanicsville I saw its incomparable beauty and the uniqueness of what it has to offer. So from the eyes of someone who was NOT born here, here is what I love about Mechanicsville:

  • The farms – Mechanicsville used to be all farms. Although there may not be as many now because of “progress,” Mechanicsville still has roads that are surrounded by farm land.  It’s a peaceful spot. And it’s not just that there’s farms. It’s how they farm. Mechanicsville still has a small Amish population.  Drive down Rt 236 or Rt 6 and you can see them plowing the fields with a team of 4 or 6 Clydesdales, little kids with their cute straw hats following behind. It really helps you slow your pace, reminisce about the way things used to be, and think about the important things.
  • Fresh grown produce – I love being minutes from fresh produce! The Mennonites, Amish, and local farmers set up stands and sell what they’ve grown on their land. Sometimes, you will be driving and all of a sudden pass a home made roadside stand of vegetables with a sigh “FREE.  THE HONOR SYSTEM.” It makes you do a u turn. Zucchini, yellow squash, watermelon, corn on the cob, tomatoes, berries, peaches, onions, potatoes, cucumbers and more! We love Mechanicsville’s growing season!
  • Reasonable weather – This one makes lots of sense if you are familiar with anything about Michigan. I grew up 45 minutes from the U.P. so I am used to snow. In fact, I LOVE snow. I miss it. But, that doesn’t mean that I don’t acknowledge the HASSLE of snow! Mechanicsville has a very mild winter. It’s mostly clouds and rain. About once a winter it may get below 10 degrees.  It really does make life easier when you don’t have to store an extra set of tires all year long for winter, have a second closet of bulky clothes, and worry about getting up an hour early for work just to scrap your car off of a foot of snow.  Spring and summer are lovely. 70-80 degrees. Occasionally it does get a little too hot, but that’s my excuse for “a beach day!” And now, all my friends want to come visit me and escape the MI winter tundra. Win again!
  • Southern manners – If ever you catch yourself thinking “Really? Maryland is a southern state?” it only takes one visit here to be convinced. According to geography, Maryland is technically a “southern” state by virtue of being below the Mason-Dixon Line.  But that is not the part that convinced me, mostly because I didn’t know where or what the Mason-Dixon Line was before I moved here.  St. Mary’s County has a southern charm.  I have visited other towns like Savannah that the southern charm “look.”  Mechanicsville doesn’t have the “look.” The people have the southern charm.  I have never had the door opened for me as many times as I have here. In fact, it is such a normal thing now that it stands out if someone does NOT open a door for you. People always speak to one another. Good morning, hi, how are you, good to see you, have a good day.  Mechanicsville is home to a friendly bunch of people.  They bring the southern charm to Mechanicsville!

A Guest Blog by Jennifer G. a friend of Kevin Copsey (who was born here!)