Deflate Mylar Balloons to Prevent Fires and Power Outages
PSE&G Encourages Customers to Safely Dispose of Balloons When Celebration Ends
(NEWARK, N.J. – May 16, 2019) Although the current global helium shortage hasn’t stopped many celebrants from carrying Mylar balloons to graduations and other parties, keeping balloons away from power lines is essential to public safety. Public Service Electric and Gas Company, New Jersey’s largest utility, reminds customers that proper handling and disposal of Mylar balloons prevents them from drifting into power lines and causing power outages.
Last summer, Mylar balloons caused two noteworthy PSE&G outages – one that lasted six minutes and affected more than 3,500 customers and another that lasted 35 minutes and affected nearly 4,000 customers.
The metallic coating on Mylar balloons conducts electricity. Because of this, when a Mylar balloon touches a power line or floats into substation equipment it can cause a short circuit. This contact can lead to downed wires, power outages, fires and injuries.
The safety of our customers is always PSE&G’s top priority. To reduce the risk of outages and injuries, customers should keep the following safety tips in mind:
- NEVER touch a power line. Do not attempt to retrieve a balloon, kite, or other types of toys or debris entangled in an overhead power line or substation. Call PSE&G to report the problem at 1-800-436-7734 so our crews can remove the item safely.
- Keep Mylar balloons and other decorations away from overhead power lines and all utility equipment.
- Do not fly kites or hold Mylar balloons in the rain, during electrical storms nor while crossing streets. K
- Keep balloons tethered at all times. Make sure balloons are secured to a weight that is heavy enough to prevent them from floating away.
- Always dispose of Mylar balloons properly by safely puncturing the balloon in several places to release the helium that otherwise could cause the balloon to float away.
For more information, visit PSE&G’s safety tips.
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Public Service Electric and Gas Co. (PSE&G) is New Jersey’s oldest and largest gas and electric delivery public utility, serving nearly three-quarters of the state’s population. PSE&G is the winner of the ReliabilityOne Award for superior electric system reliability as well as the 2018 Outstanding Customer Reliability Experience Award. PSE&G is a subsidiary of Public Service Enterprise Group Inc. (PSEG) (NYSE:PEG), a diversified energy company. PSEG has been named to the Dow Jones Sustainability Index for North America for 11 consecutive years.