Cable Strikes | Strike to Low Voltage Cable

Published 18 May 2021


Cable Strikes

Utility Strike Avoidance Group

USAG have published a range of documents to assist industry understanding of the root cause and contributory factors behind specific incidents. The aim is to improve industry standards and reduce the number of cable strikes.

Cable damage is often caused by excavating machines – hand held tools such as pneumatic drills, crowbars, pins, picks and forks also expose workers to potential sources of danger when digging around underground cables.

The next in the series is a safety alert thanks to Highway England regarding a strike to a low voltage cable during a new build housing project.

Incident Overview

Cable strike to a low voltage distribution network damaged by a third party at Hamilton, Leicestershire resulted in a power outage to residents. This network was installed and owned by another company GTC and is a low voltage LV distribution network embedded within the wider network footprint of Western Power Distribution.

USAG recommends if you are working in a relatively new build area you should check plans for the presence of low voltage network where there should be. Below is a copy of the plan for this location and you can see missing low voltage schematics from the plan on the eastern edge where new homes are built and occupied. If you come across this situation you should check for further asset owners. The usual distribution network owner for the area should be able to help you identify the network owner if there are no above ground markings or signage on substations.

Strike to Low Voltage Cable

Strike to Low Voltage Cable

Protecting Cables Against Strikes & Restoring Power Post-Strike

Thorne & Derrick have been distributors for 3M Electrical since 1985 and can provide a range of reliable and easy to install Cable Repair Products – this includes Scotch Tapes, Scotchcast Joints and Cold Shrink Tubes to provide effective re-instatement of cable sheath jackets on all types of LV MV HV cables in onshore and offshore locations with safe or hazardous area workplace classifications.

Cable Repair Products

Cable Repair Products

Our range of cable protection covers manufactured by Centriforce provide underground utility protection of LV MV HV cables including Tapetile (11kV) and Stokbord (33kV 66kV 132kV) – contact us to discuss Cable Damage Prevention Products including Dectamesh, the underground detectable warning tape for alerting excavators of the presence of buried cables and to prevent potentially lethal accidents during excavation.

Stokbord Cable Covers from Centriforce provide heavy duty, high impact, underground cable protection for fibre optic, low voltage, high voltage (11kV, 22kV, 33kV, 66kV) and extra high voltage (132kV-400kV) power cable networks.


Tapetile cable warning tape manufactured by Centriforce is rolled out into the cable trench for quick and easy protection of low voltage, high voltage, street lighting and underground electricity cables up to 11kV.


Thorne & Derrick International