Electric Shock Question

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Old 06-06-17, 01:00 PM
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Electric Shock Question

It's been raining for several days in south Florida an my front yard is flooded. My kids wanna play in it but I'm concerned about the risk of electric shock from potential faulty wiring the neighbors may have , since now the water is connected with everyone else's yard. I know my outside wiring was done correctly and I have turned off all my exterior breakers as a precaution. My question is: how far will electricity travel in water at a dangerous current level? I'm not asking about downed high voltage power lines, but regular circuits that would power a pool , exterior lights , or well pumps....
 
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Old 06-06-17, 01:07 PM
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What kind of faulty wiring do you suspect the neighbors having?

I don't know the answer but a few years back 2 young boys were swimming near their houseboat and got electrocuted from faulty wiring to another houseboat.
 
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Old 06-06-17, 01:10 PM
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Not sure if they have faulty wiring , I just worry too much. But for the sake of this discussion, say a neighbor accidentally dropped a 20 amp extension cord in the water , how far away would one have to be from the water to not get zapped ?
 
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Old 06-06-17, 01:13 PM
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The electricians should be along shortly with a better answer than I can give but I'd expect the circuit breaker to pop shortly under that scenario.
 
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Old 06-06-17, 02:26 PM
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It's really hard to guess. It would depend a lot on what energized wiring was exposed to the floodwaters and just how conductive the local soil and the water itself happens to be. Both of these depend on the mineral content and it would be impossible to guess. There are certainly plenty of examples of people electrocuted in pools or spas, flooded basements and boat docks with shore power; so it is a real concern.

If there are higher voltages such as a downed power pole or a pad transformer in the yard I would stay far, far away and call the power company. Power companies are usually pretty quick to disconnect underground distribution lines that have been flooded, but I wouldn't guarantee it.

Floodwaters often are heavily contaminated with sewage, agriculture run-off and similar yuck that isn't great for the kids anyway.
 
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