Properties of electricity

Electricity is an important part of our lives - but it can be dangerous, too. When used properly, electricity is a safe and convenient form of energy; but when used improperly, electricity can cause fires, shocks, injuries, and even death.

  1. Electricity is a traveler. It is always looking for a way to the ground.
  2. You and water are two of electricity's favorite things to travel through. This is why you are not allowed in the swimming pool during a storm. DANGER!
  3. Something that helps electricity travel from one place to another is called a conductor. Water and metals are good conductors. Electricity can even travel through a piece of wood, kite string, etc.
  4. 4. Insulator Something that stops electricity from traveling from one place to another is called an insulator.
    Special rubber, glass and ceramic are good insulators.
  5. In the blink of an eye, electricity can travel around the equator 7-1/2 times.

Fact finder

Why can a bird sit on a power line without getting shocked?

A bird can sit on a power line because there is no way for the electricity to travel to the ground.

If a squirrel is touching the line but also is touching a transformer on a pole, the animal will be shocked because electricity found a path to the ground.

Fact finder

Is your body a conductor or insulator of electricity? HINT: Most of the human body is made up of water.

Your body is a conductor of electricity.

That is why it is important to stay away from electric equipment, downed power lines and indoors during a lightning storm because electricity, which always tries to find a path to the ground, will travel through your body.

Fact finder

Is it okay to touch a downed power line with rubber gloves?

No. Never touch a downed power line.

Vectren electric workers are trained electricians and have special rubber gloves and other rubber protective gear and fiberglass equipment that are specially designed for that line of work and are tested by the manufacturers to insulate against a certain level of power.

Fun to-do

A Shocking Experience – learn about, experiment with and observe the effects of static electricity on a cold rainy day when you have to play inside.

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