TCN cautions Nigerians against erecting mechanic workshops, cafeterias, others under power lines 

Oredola Adeola
The Transmission Company of Nigeria  has cautioned Nigerians against  setting up mechanical workshops, cafeterias and other business activities under high tension power lines, urging them to avoid being exposed to both health hazards and probable untimely death.

The company made this known in a statement released on Monday, obtained by EnergyDay, noting that building houses under high tension power transmission lines could lead to electrocution.

This according to the TCN  is the reason why the Federal Government (FG) takes possession of a certain portion of the land around the transmission infrastructure.

The company added that it is mandatory to observe 25 meters on both sides of the 330kV transmission lines and 15meters on each side of the 132kV lines.

It also  advised Nigerians to stop putting up structures including commercial and residential apartments under and near high-tension lines in the interest of their health and safety. The company also warned them not to transact business, build or dump materials/refuse under high tension power cables.

The statement said, “TCN as a power engineering entity deals with high voltage electricity while transmitting electricity from GenCos to DisCos load centers nationwide.

Despite the regulation and regular sensitization campaigns, the incidence of violation of transmission lines Right of Way has persisted and has become a major threat to the successful execution of TCN’s grid expansion agenda.

“Presently, all over the nation, illegal structures, some with multiple floors have been erected without regard to the Right of Way limitations, health and safety considerations as well as urban development requirements

“We have warned people against the health hazards that may occur due to Electromagnetic emission that can negatively impact the health of those living close to high voltage transmission lines.

“The International Agency for Research on Cancer has sufficiently established that leukemia in children is one of the health hazards of electromagnetic exposure. This was established by measured and calculated magnetic field exposure, which includes safe distance of homes to power lines.

“Observing the Right of Way (RoW) will also prevent electrocution caused by snapping of transmission lines. Although this is not common, the death toll is usually very high when it does happen.

“It would be recalled that no fewer than 30 people lost their lives in Calabar in 2017, as a result of a high tension cable that snapped and fell on a viewing center where football fans were watching the UEFA Europa league.

“All manner of menial jobs such as mechanical repairs, food and other business activities under high tension power lines expose people to both health hazards and probable untimely death.

“TCN has continued to enlighten the citizenry in town hall meetings, and other platforms speaking about the inherent dangers of building under transmission lines and towers,” the statement ended.The transmission company however urged people not to erect shops  under high tension cables. It said everyone has a role to play, adding that actions taken action the scourge is a collective national development.