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Maryland High Voltage Line Act

The Maryland High Voltage Line Act requires that before anyone begins work that may bring people or equipment within 10 ft of overhead utility lines, they must notify BGE. BGE will make the area safe for the work to be done. HVLA Guidelines apply to both professional and non-professional workers. No one is exempt from compliance.

In addition, OSHA requires that when using a crane or derrick, a 20 ft clearance is required to be maintained from all overhead power lines until the voltage of the line is identified. Contact BGE for assistance when using cranes or derricks at 1-877-427-2008.

What must contractors do to comply with HVLA?

  • Notify BGE at 1-800-685-0123 or Contact Us BEFORE any work begins if work may put people or equipment with in 10 ft, or 20 ft when using cranes or derricks, of overhead utility lines.
  • Acquaint employees with the Act;
  • Post Signs: Post warning signs on all equipment that may come in proximity to overhead lines.
    • Equipment includes:
      • Ladders, cranes, derricks, pile drivers, power shovels, trimming rigs, and similar apparatus.
    • Signs should be:
      • Permanent & weather resistant
      • Legible from a distance of at least 12 ft.
      • Placed on equipment in clear view of operator while controls and each individual outside the equipment
      • Placed on the boom of each crane or derrick so that when the boom is raised, it is at eye level of operator.
    • Signs should say: "Unlawful to operate this equipment within 10 ft of any electrical wire."

What will BGE do in response to your request?

    • With prior notice and proper approval, BGE will initiate proper safety measures, which may include:
      • Relocating the lines
      • Installing physical barriers to prevent any contact with the lines.
      • De-energizing and grounding the lines.
      • Other proactive safety steps.

While it is BGE’s goal to help you work safely around overhead utility lines, BGE is not required to bear any expense for any safety measure required by the High Voltage Line Act.

Failure to comply with HVLA is punishable by fine, imprisonment, or both.

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