May is Electrical Safety Month

Seventeen-year-old Mary Gehrig was driving home from a friend’s house on a stormy June night. Around 25 minutes into her 30-minute drive, Gehrig turned onto the county road that would take her home. Although there was near-zero visibility due to the storm that turned much more severe than originally forecast, she noticed two white lines off into the distance. As she got closer, she realized that those lines were across the road, in her path, and that they were anything but small.

Gehrig slammed on the brakes and her car struck the object, which happened to be one of two high-voltage transmission power lines lying in the road. The massive cable stopped Mary’s car in its tracks. The car’s electrical system was damaged, and she was stuck there alone during the storm.

Fire chief Rich Schock, who was on the scene that night, said, “Those are large transmission lines with a lot of volts in them,” adding that the outcome could have been fatal had Mary gotten out. “Mary did everything right,” he said.

Watch Mary's story and learn how she stayed safe that night.