Staying safe

Learn how electricity gets to your home whilst learning how to stay safe.


At NIE Networks we own and look after the electricity equipment in Northern Ireland.

Electricity is made at power stations and travels along overhead lines held up by pylons.

Although some people think that pylons look like climbing frames they are extremely dangerous to climb.

There are yellow and black ‘Danger of Death’ signs on pylons to warn people that they could die by climbing them.


A substation reduces electricity voltage so that it is easier and safer to transmit along overhead power lines to homes, schools and offices.

A substation may be protected by fences or within a building. To help you recognise a substation there will be yellow and black ‘Danger of Death’ signs at the entrance and around it.

  • You should NEVER enter a substation. If you lose a football or toys at a substation you should NEVER try and get them but ask an adult to call our telephone number that will be found at the entrance of a substation.
  • You should NEVER break into a substation or get too close to electricity equipment because your life will be in danger.

Overhead lines

Once the electricity is broken down at substations it travels along overhead lines.

Overhead lines are live and carry high electricity voltages ranging from 230 volts up to 110,000 volts. Yellow and black ‘Danger of Death’ signs will be clearly displayed on the wooden poles which support overhead lines.

If you are flying your kite, model aeroplane of fishing, it is very important to make sure that you look up and look out for overhead lines.

A fishing rod or kite can conduct electricity and they do not have to touch the line for you to be electrocuted as electricity jumps gaps.

If your kite or model aircraft is blown towards an electricity line you must:

  • Let go immediately.
  • Never touch the string to pull the kite free, electricity can travel down the string and you could be electrocuted.
  • Keep yourself and others well away.
  • Get an adult to call us on 03457 643 643 for help and we can safely remove the kite from the line. If you leave it and say nothing someone else could get hurt or even killed by touching the hanging string.


The last stage in the journey of electricity is from a mini-pillar to your home or school. A mini-pillar is a grey metal box with a yellow and black 'Danger of Death' sign on the front of it.

Some people think it is fun to vandalise a mini-pillar and try to open it but this is very dangerous as you could be electrocuted and killed.








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