Man burned after cutting dead’ cable

A MAN was burned when he cut through a live electricity main – after being told that the wire was dead by inspectors from EDF Energy. Sebastino Mauro, 38, a father of two, told The Hunts Post he was horrified to learn that the very next day an employee

A MAN was burned when he cut through a live electricity main - after being told that the wire "was dead" by inspectors from EDF Energy.

Sebastino Mauro, 38, a father of two, told The Hunts Post he was horrified to learn that the very next day an employee of EDF was killed by a live cable.

He said he was saved from serious injury or death only by water leaking into the cable, which shorted it. But the incident left him with burns to his wrist and face.

Mr Mauro said he had cut half-way through the cable with a grinder when water from empty ducting started leaking into the cut and the electricity cable shorted.

If the water had not intervened, Mr Mauro would have continued to cut through the cable which he says EDF had convinced him was dead.

"There was a huge flash before my eyes, and a bang. My work clothes were burnt off me and I got burns to my hand and face. I was thrown back two metres."

Most Read

Mr Mauro's accident was on Wednesday. The following day, on Thursday, John Hall, employed by EDF in Croydon, Surrey, died working on an underground cable.

EDF issued a statement after Mr Hall's death with reminders warning workers to treat all cables as live unless they had been tested.

Mr Mauro, a developer, was building an extension on his property in St Mary's Street, Eynesbury. He told The Hunts Post that, while excavating the drive, he and his builders had discovered a large, main cable and called out EDF inspectors.

The inspectors had reassured him that the cable was dead - however it turned out that "a tail" of the cable had been left live and continued into the where Mr Mauro was working.

He said: "I am not seeking compensation - I don't want a penny from them. I just want EDF to take notice.

"The inspectors who came to my property were looking at a map and the maps are wrong. They don't indicate where the live cables are."

An EDF spokesman confirmed that Mr Mauro had contacted the firm when he found the cable in his drive.

She said: "EDF Energy Networks is committed to providing a safe and reliable electricity service. Our engineers are highly trained and follow stringent safety procedures.

"The cable under the drive was tested and proved dead by an EDF Energy Networks engineer. The engineer advised that the cable was safe at this point, but if the customer uncovered cables at any other location he should contact EDF so we could revisit the site and check the cable was safe.

"For safety reasons, it is essential that customers contact us in advance of carrying out work around our electricity network so we can ensure the area is safe before they proceed.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter