Alabama Power rep talks safety at Kiwanis meeting
by James Phillips
Sep 14, 2010 | 1240 views | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
According to the National Safety Council, there are approximately 12,000 electrical-related accidents resulting in 525 deaths every year in the United States.

Electric safety education is a key to decreasing those numbers, Alabama Power’s Charlie Cook said at Monday’s meeting of the Kiwanis Club of Jasper. Cook, office manager at the Dora branch of Alabama Power, said electric safety is currently introduced in schools in Grade 4.

“That is when electricity is introduced in their science classes, and we have a safety program that we try to present for each fourth grade class,” he said.

The program, Safe-T-Opolis, is a scale model showing overhead wires at a typical home and yard. Safe-T-Opolis explains how to stay safe when wires are downed, when climbing near power lines or when kites or fishing line comes into contact with power lines. Cook shared the Safe-T-Opolis program with Kiwanis members Monday.

“We start showing this to fourth graders, but I think it is something that everyone needs to see,” he said. “We give this presentation to everyone from church groups to senior citizen groups. We don’t come into contact with power lines very often, so it is good for people to know what to do if in that situation.”

Cook showed how current would flow through objects into people.

“This is a serious thing,” he said. “If you have ever been shocked and felt it, that is enough electricity to kill you.”

Cook also mentioned the Science Suitcases educational program sponsored by Alabama Power, which allows teachers to choose from more than 300 interactive science kits.

“They can be checked out for a four-week period,” Cook said. “They are shipped to the nearest customer service office for pickup, but a lot of times I will even deliver them to the schools in my area. I think this is a great program, but it is underutilized.”

For more information on both programs, visit www.alabamapower.com/education.