The North West Star

Spinning power line markers designed to save lives

Simple but life saving: Acting Ergon Area Manager Ryan Campbell demonstrates the effectiveness of rotamarkers at the NQ Field Days in Townsville. Picture: Supplied

This is sponsored content for Ergon Energy Network.

You're driving at dusk and you don't spot the wallaby until it starts bounding across the road.

It's a familiar story for country drivers and one that explains the effectiveness of spinning power line markers.

"Humans are hard-wired to notice movement, so by installing spinning markers on power lines in high-traffic areas on farms we can increase visibility and reduce the risk of heavy vehicles, machinery and aircraft coming into contact with high-voltage wires," said Ergon Energy's Community Safety Manager Aaron Smith.

"Power lines are such an integral part of our lives that they blend into the scenery and we may not notice them, which isn't a problem until your life depends on it."

Mr Smith said power line markers were a worthwhile investment, especially in areas where aerial application and harvesting frequently occurs within close proximity to overhead power lines.

"We've joined forces with the Queensland Farmers' Federation (QFF) on an incentive program to encourage more property owners to install rotamarkers in areas of concern where there are heavy vehicles or aircraft operating near power lines," he said.

"Ergon Energy Network is offering to install up to ten rotamarkers per property at a reduced cost of $100 each and QFF is offering member farmers a co-contribution of up to $500 towards the installation costs."

After an alarming increase in heavy vehicles and machinery contacting power lines, Ergon is appealing to workers in high-risk industries to "Look Up and Live".

Ergon Energy Community Safety Manager Aaron Smith with the Look Up and Live app. Picture: Supplied

There were 432 accidental contacts with power lines in Queensland last year compared to 360 reported in 2020, including incidents involving tractors, harvesters, haul-out vehicles, excavators, spray rigs, augers and irrigation equipment.

"Right across Queensland, whether on farm or in town, people can also utilise the Look Up and Live mobile app, a free, lifesaving tool to plan safe work around power lines," Mr Smith said.

"Contacting power lines could be lethal, cause serious injuries or destroy your plant and equipment, so anything to reduce the risks of an incident on your property or work site is worth it."

To find out more about the Ergon Energy Network offer to install rotamarkers on properties visit www.ergon.com.au

This is sponsored content for Ergon Energy Network.