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Author Karen Marie SheltonPosted top top January 21, 2016May 14, 2019Categories Outage management Systems
Power Outages and also Squirrels

Members of the Sciuridae family consists of small or medium-size rodents.

You are watching: Can squirrels get electrocuted on power lines

The family includes tree squirrels, soil squirrels, chipmunks, marmots, paris squirrels, and also prairie dogs.

Power outages and also squirrels, those innocent looking rodents, are frequently a significant topic of conversation.

More Than half Of U.S. Power Outages Are led to By What?

Popular by some for your cuteness factor, many utilities take into consideration squirrels major threats since they are regularly the reason of strength outages.

Utility sector experts believe squirrels and related rodents are directly responsible for an ext than half of all U.S. Power outages, regularly resulting in their electrocution.

Scaling utility Poles

The furry rodents can quickly scale energy poles in order to travel across power cables.

Transformers and/or capacitors aren’t exempt from squirrel invasions by the tiny animals foraging because that food or a safe location to keep their nuts.

To sharpen your teeth, 설 설 will regularly chew ~ above live power lines while taking a rest from utilizing them as their an individual high it is provided cross-country to express lanes.

Electrocuted Squirrels

When a squirrel happens to make inappropriate call with a power line, conductor or various other high voltage equipment, they are regularly electrocuted. The result? Shorted out circuits which often fully shut under the equipment.

Under right circumstances, the electrical shock knocks the squirrel’s body totally free from the tools (and the flow of electrical power resumes), but in plenty of instances the body of the squirrel remains lodged in the equipment triggering a continuous fault burning the end circuit breakers and related energy equipment.

A an excellent example the a squirrel prompted power outage developed in June the 2015 in California. A squirrel scampered right into a substation in El Cerrito, California and also was electrocuted.

This led to a power outage to more than 45,000 civilization in the east Bay area for much more than two and also a half hours.

American Public power Association Squirrel Index

The highly tenacious tiny critters are such a significant problem because that utilities the American Public strength Association (APPA) created a Squirrel table of contents to track rodent connected outages for much more than 150 public strength utilities across the country.


The Squirrel Index, a customer-weighted metric which represents the rate per 1,000 client at which squirrel-related outages occur over a duration of time, confirms the hypothesized peak duration of squirrel activity in the warmest month of the year.


Over the years squirrels have carried down the high-tech NASDAQ stock industry twice ( 1987 and 1994) and have been responsible because that a spate of power outages at numerous utilities throughout the unified States.

Squirrel Guards

The squirrel trouble is significant enough that plenty of utility companies have resorted to installation squirrel deterrents.

This is very good news not only for utility customers, yet for the squirrels.

Utilities hit by squirrel motivated outages discover to arrangement for the future to minimization or stop future power outages.

Rubber or plastic plates, or easily rotating sleeves are sometimes used to discourage squirrel access to utility facilities.

Other squirrel deterrent incorporate rotating baffles and/or bushing come cover perceptible points top top poles and transformers.

Alternative techniques may be deployed by utilities come discourage squirrels from climbing on poles and substations much more prone to squirrel visitations.

Luckily, according to the APPA, together of 2014, the tendency of squirrel strikes on strength lines has started to wane together utilities have taken measures to regulate the menace.

What to Do once Squirrel associated Power Outages Occur?

For end 20 years, utilities have actually been depending upon dataVoice worldwide to help manage and also prevent all types of power outages with ideal of breed Outage monitoring Software (OMS).

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Not only does dataVoice aid utilities control outages, castle measurably aid enhance customer service.

For an ext information or to schedule a webinar around the dataVoice Outage monitoring Software and related solutions call Deanna Sandoval at 888.328.2864 or email denna