Farm vehicles in Cornwall have hit overhead lines more than 60 times in just four months.

Releasing this shocking figure, Western Power Distribution (WPD) is urging farmers to take action to prevent fatal accidents.

WPD was called to more than 60 incidents between January and April 2022 in which vehicles driven by farmers or contractors had made contact with overhead lines. Many of these happened on farm land.

Consequently, the electricity network operator for the south west is asking farmers to eliminate electrical hazards and clearly signpost dangers to keep staff and visitors safe around electricity.

WPD operational safety advisor Eddie Cochrane said: “Farmers must remember that they owe a duty of care to anyone who works on their land. This means that the signage and layout of the farm should direct all people to be safe, or draw their attention to significant hazards that can cause serious harm.

READ NEXT: South west has highest number of farming deaths in UK

“Unfortunately, we’ve had a few incidents in the last 12 months where people have arrived to tip aggregates and fertiliser and have ended up coming into contact with overhead power lines. While not all of these have been on farm land, it would be wise to learn lessons from others’ mistakes and apply this to the farming environment.

“Simple steps to keep everyone safe include not storing objects, such as straw bales, under overhead lines, avoiding building too close to 11kV lines and cables (plans can be obtained from WPD or Linesearch) or even providing close supervision when contractors of delivery lorries turn up on the farm. All of this can help to keep everyone safe whether they are regular farm staff or visitors.”

In the event of an incident, farmers are urged to keep clear and call WPD’s 105 emergency number.

For an even quicker emergency response, farmers can use the ‘What3Words’ app to pinpoint the exact location of the incident. This will enable WPD engineers to isolate the power in seconds using remote technology and help to prevent any loss of life.

For more information about farm safety, visit