LUCELEC: Treat stay wires with caution

LUCELEC: Treat stay wires with caution

The Saint Lucia Electricity Services Limited (LUCELEC) has advised members of the public to be wary of guy-wires or ‘stay’ wires.

The warning follows the March 18, 2017 death of  Tony Charlery, 42, of Palmiste, Soufriere by suspected electrocution.

Charlery is reported to have held on to a stay wire as he  walked down a slope on his way home.

LUCELEC has expressed condolences to the family and said it is cooperating with the investigation into the death.

But the company said it would not comment on the details of an active investigation.

LUCELEC’s Chief Engineer, Goodwin D’Auvergne, told a news conference on Wednesday that while designed to be safe, stay wires, like any other part of the electricity infrastructure, should be treated with caution at all times.

He stated that it is possible possible under rare circumstances and accidentally, that a stay wire can become electrified if through some means it comes into contact with an energised conductor or energised wire

D’Auvergne said that LUCELEC conducts ongoing checks.

But he disclosed that the company has up to 30,000 utility poles.

“We definitely have a maintenance schedule where we go around and check all those stays periodically,” D’Auvergne said.

He explained that stay wires provide stability to free standing structures such as utility poles and assist in keeping them upright.

D’Auvergne told reporters  that  the wires are usually attached to the top of the poles and are secured in the ground at the other end.

D’Auvergne  said that by design, the wires do not carry electricity.

He explained that LUCELEC’s  stay wires conform to international standards and local regulations.

The LUCELEC Chief Engineer said the wires include insulation.

“Under normal conditions these insulators prevent voltage from occurring on the metal part of the stay wire which is accessible to the public,” D’Auvergne told today’s news conference.

 

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12 Comments

  1. Sad-But-True
    March 23, 2017 at 10:25 am Reply

    Lucelec needs to ensure that those stay wires are not energised at any time and properly insulated. This is a poor excuse. There has been a number of deaths due to this. And lucelec takes no responsibility.

  2. Anonymous
    March 23, 2017 at 11:08 am Reply

    I do not think that Lucelec is doing a good enough job of maintaining the wiring on the utility poles. I have seen many instances where the wiring on utility poles especially these poles distributing domestic feeds, look like a ball of spaghetti or bird nests with television and telephone wires all bundled together, this makes it quite easy for left over pieces of wire to connect a live line to a stay cable especially during windy periods.

  3. How it is
    March 23, 2017 at 11:22 am Reply

    Normally people stay wires are not a single strand supporting a pole. There is an insulating body in the form of ceramic/porcelain type between the two pieces.
    Not saying it is impossible but very rare for a stay to be energised.

  4. Society
    March 23, 2017 at 12:23 pm Reply

    I hope this guy family gets..duelly compensated .cause wants you’re don’t have a so called sir name….nothing for you in st.lucia.smh

    1. Lucianman101
      March 23, 2017 at 12:54 pm Reply

      Indeed, saint lucians should sue more corporations for the mal-practice

  5. Anonymous
    March 23, 2017 at 2:34 pm Reply

    “The Saint Lucia Electricity Services Limited (LUCELEC) has advised members of the public to be wary of guy-wires or ‘stay’ wires.” REALLY!! And they are all over the place, on side walks…and that’s the response..as St Lucians we really tolerate crap excuses as accountability!

  6. John L. Charelery
    March 23, 2017 at 2:44 pm Reply

    My most sincere codolances to the family and friends of the victim of this unfortunate incident. Unfortunate in the sense that this stay wire should never have become energized if the electrical apparatus on the pole was installed correctly. LUCELEC’s excuse and explanation to the incident is gross insult to the intelligence of St. Lucians and others reading this blog. A porcline insulator is inserted one third down from the pole top on the stay wire to eleminate any chance of accidental electrical contact and subquent energizing of this wire. How did the stay wire become line? LUCELEC is engaged in a mal practice of cutting two to three strands of the 2 x 16 alluminum alloy conductor which is used to power the street lamps because the wire is too big. However in the process of this undertaking the wire strands are usually bend backwards to facilitate the cutting. This leaves a 1/8 to 1/4 inch of bend/ hook of alluminum conductor which makes contact with the metal frame of the lamp when connecting the lamp (Street lamp) thereby making the entire frame of the lighting fixture energized when the lamp in powered. Therefore any stay wire which makes contact with the bracket of this lamp inadvertently becomes live. For LUCELEC to caution the public to be wary of stay wires for fear that they may become live is garbage. LUCELEC need to fix the problem because there have been about four similar incidents in the last ten years. Meanwhile, LUCELEC should be made to pay for this mans life…electrical malpractice.

  7. Anonymous
    March 24, 2017 at 10:33 am Reply

    There is a stay wire in my yard right on my walkway I need it out please

  8. Anonymous
    March 26, 2017 at 8:02 am Reply

    There is a stay wire in my yard, I have been to lucelec about it they came to my home and take a look at it, then they ask me for land paper i told them i have it , they said they will come and take measurement they never came back up to this day , am going back to day office again, if your are reading this take note, the pole number is GMKT5364

  9. Anonymous
    March 26, 2017 at 11:09 am Reply

    Concerned Citizen

    To avoid any other reoccurring incident, LUCELEC, kindle wrap all Guy/Stay Wires with a form of 100% protective insulators. Thanks in anticipation! Amen.

  10. Anonymous
    April 10, 2017 at 5:00 pm Reply

    My most sincere codolances to the family and friends of the victim of this unfortunate incident. Unfortunate in the sense that this stay wire should never have become energized if the electrical apparatus on the pole was installed correctly. LUCELEC’s excuse and explanation to the incident is gross insult to the intelligence of St. Lucians and others reading this blog. A porcline insulator is inserted one third down from the pole top on the stay wire to eleminate any chance of accidental electrical contact and subquent energizing of this wire. How did the stay wire become line? LUCELEC is engaged in a mal practice of cutting two to three strands of the 2 x 16 alluminum alloy conductor which is used to power the street lamps because the wire is too big. However in the process of this undertaking the wire strands are usually bend backwards to facilitate the cutting. This leaves a 1/8 to 1/4 inch of bend/ hook of alluminum conductor which makes contact with the metal frame of the lamp when connecting the lamp (Street lamp) thereby making the entire frame of the lighting fixture energized when the lamp in powered. Therefore any stay wire which makes contact with the bracket of this lamp inadvertently becomes live. For LUCELEC to caution the public to be wary of stay wires for fear that they may become live is garbage. LUCELEC need to fix the problem because there have been about four similar incidents in the last ten years. Meanwhile, LUCELEC should be made to pay for this mans life…electrical malpractice.

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