Extinguishing Substation Fires

Never enter a substation unless specifically directed to do so by your incident commander. If you have been told to suppress the fire, take the following precautions:

  • Position emergency vehicles at least 30 feet away from any power lines, whether inside or outside of the substation.
  • Use only nonconductive ladders. Do not use metal ladders.
  • Carry ladders parallel to the ground. This helps you avoid contacting overhead facilities.
  • Never enter a substation until utility personnel have confirmed that the equipment is de-energized.
  • Never use a solid stream of water on an oil fire; always use a fog stream. Transformer oil fires can be extinguished with protein foam sprays and water fog sprays, but a solid stream of water can actually spread an oil fire.
  • Report all oil releases to the incident commander. Follow standard tactics for a hazardous materials response.