Mylar balloons can cause power outages

Published 10:48 pm Thursday, June 6, 2019

Metallic properties can wreak havoc with electrical lines


  To The Leader


THE WOODLANDS, Texas – Balloons can add a festive touch to graduation parties, summer celebrations, and other outside gatherings. While they can be colorful and fun, mylar balloons released into the air can contact power lines and darken the revelry with a power outage.

If a metallic balloon touches a power line or floats into a substation, it can cause a surge of electricity, leading to power outages, fires, and even injuries.

To reduce these outages and help keep the lights on, follow these simple tips:

  • Fly metallic balloons indoors, keeping them away from all entrances and exits so they can’t float outside.
  • If using balloons outside, keep them tethered with weights or securely tied to a stationary object.
  • Dispose of balloons properly after use by puncturing and deflating them.
  • Should a balloon contact with a power line and become tangled, do not attempt to retrieve it. Call 1-800-ENTERGY (1-800-368-3749) for help.
  • Always assume power lines are live, even if there is an outage.

While balloons are common this time of year, so are kites. When flying kites, be sure to pick a wide-open field that is free of trees and power lines.

  • Never use metal kites or metallic string, as they can conduct electricity.
  • Do not fly kites on stormy days, as lightning can use the string as a conductor to reach the ground.
  • If you notice a problem with a power line, keep a safe distance and call 1-800-ENTERGY to report it. If a situation requires immediate police action or other emergency services, call 911.