The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

October 16, 2013

Students get lesson in electricity safety

By Phyllis Zorn, Staff Writer
Enid News & Eagle

ENID, Okla. — Fourth-grade students at Taft Elementary School should be safer now after getting lessons in electricity safety from OG&E Electric Services.

Troy Cowley, community relations coordinator for OG&E, brought a table-sized street scene complete with live electrical wires to Beth Culver’s classroom Wednesday afternoon. Kelsi Staudenecker’s students joined in.

Cowley donned rubber gloves that covered his arms up to his elbows and used the street scene — complete with a house, a substation, a school bus, transformers, a tree and people — to demonstrate what happens when various items come in contact with the power lines.

Cowley talked to students about what to do, what to avoid, and how to be safe in situations such as a downed power line on a car.

“If you happen to lose a ball inside the fence around the substation, don’t climb the fence,” Cowley said. “Go tell your mom or dad and have them call us. We’ll come get your ball out for you. You might have to wait until the next day, but we will get it for you.”

The 42 students proved to listen well. Asked what they had learned, they were quick to show their newly-obtained knowledge.

“Don’t put a knife into an outlet,” one said.

“Don’t mix water and electricity,” said another.

Cowley told them he checked when he came into their room for something that is his “pet peeve,” chew marks on the headphone cords. He congratulated them on the fact he found no signs that they had chewed on the wires.

“Kids, those headphones are plugged into a 110-volt computer,” Cowley said. “Don’t chew on that.”

Cowley visits about 75 schools per year throughout northwest Oklahoma.T