Electrical Myths

Electrical Myths – True or False

There are many common myths when it comes to electricity. Read the information below and test your knowledge about common electrical myths.

  1.  True or False? “Wood is an Insulator.”

False. Actually, wood is a conductor-but not a good one. The molecules in wood are far apart so it’s hard for electricity to move from one to the next, but the higher the voltage, the easier it becomes. If the wood is wet it becomes a very good conductor, even at low voltage.

  1. True or False? “Rubber gloves or rubber soled shoes insulate.”

This is true and false. This is true only if they are one hundred percent rubber. Household gloves and shoes are not made of pure rubber. Often, additives are mixed in with the rubber to make them more durable and marketable, making the gloves and shoes conductors.

  1. True or False? “Live wire will spark when it falls.”

 False. A power line only sparks if it falls to the ground and does not make firm contact with the ground or other material. When it makes firm contact it will often make no noise or spark, and will give the impression of being de-energized.

  1. True or False? “Only high voltage is dangerous.”

False. Voltage is not the amount of electricity in a given spot, but the pressure that pushes electricity along. Amperage (amp) is what can hurt or kill you. It takes less than one quarter of an amp to put a heart into ventricular fibrillation (irregular beating).

  1. True or False? “Not all power lines are insulated.”

True. Actually, most of outside power lines are not insulated. And, lines that are insulated are exposed to all kinds of weather so you never really know what condition the insulation is in. You should always assume the line is not insulated and not safe to touch.

  1. True or False? “Tires are NOT electrical insulators.”

True. Tires are conductors, not insulators. You are safe in your vehicle when a live wire falls on it because the path of the electricity will run on the outside of the vehicle, through the tires, and into the ground. As long as we don’t provide the electricity a path to the ground through our body, the electricity will not enter it. You should remain in your vehicle until emergency services arrive and the power is shut off. If you have to get out of your car because of an unsafe situation, jump with both feet together, making sure that you are not touching any part of the vehicle when your feet touch the ground.