Who knew hot dogs could be so critical to electrical safety?

Well, sort of.

PPL employees at a safety exhibit presentation earlier this year, preparing for the hot dog demonstration.

Since we rolled out our Live Line Electrical Safety Exhibit earlier this year to illustrate the dangers of contacting power lines, we’ve reached more than 1,700 people with our message.

Some were left asking for “more hot dog.” They were jokingly referring to the hot dog our crew uses to simulate a finger touching a power line. Needless to say, the hot dog gets ignited by quite a spark, leaving some to question the size of our hot dog budget.

But in all seriousness, the exhibit has gone over well during more than two dozen demonstrations during 2016. Most of those events have been held for emergency responders such as firefighters, police and ambulance medics.

But we’ve also shown it to school students and the general public. It’s another way we’re trying to educate the public about the dangers associated with electricity.

Feedback we’ve received has indicated an interest in even more demonstrations (and, of course, more hot dogs).

“Very eye-opening” is how one firefighter from the Jessup Fire Co. described it.

“Excellent. All firefighters should see this,” commented one attendee at a recent event in York County.

Those who have attended the events saw a number of examples of what to avoid around power lines and other electrical equipment.

Using ladders, gloves, shovels and other tools in a controlled environment, trained PPL staff wearing protective equipment show the spark, flames, smoke and crackle that occur when those items come in contact with live electrical lines. They also show what occurs when a tree branch and a Mylar balloon contact wires.

We’ll be doing more demonstrations in the months to come.

In the meantime, remember to always stay safe around power lines and never approach a fallen power line.