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Public Safety » Electric Safety » Standby Generator Safety

Standby Generator Safety

A generator can be very useful during a power outage, but remember to always follow the manufacturer’s instructions to ensure safe and proper operation. To protect yourself and your family or business, remember to follow these safety rules.


  • Have a licensed electrician install stationary or standby emergency generators.
  • Plug appliances directly into an emergency or portable generator. Don’t connect a generator directly to a breaker panel, fuse box or meter box. This could cause the power lines to become energized from the generator, posing a serious threat to utility and tree-trimming crews working to restore power.
  • Obey all local, state and national electrical and fire codes.
  • Store gasoline in approved fuel containers and out of children’s reach.
  • Keep children away from generators.
  • Have a fully charged, properly rated fire extinguisher (i.e., rated for electrical and gas fires) ready at all times.

Other reminders:

  • Never connect generators to your utility service through receptacles, outlets, breakers, fuses or meter boxes.
  • Never replenish fuel in a generator while it is running.
  • Call an electrician to repair a generator; never attempt to repair it yourself.
  • Operate your generator outside. To avoid carbon monoxide poisoning, never use a generator indoors or in attached garages. Only operate the generator outdoors in a well-ventilated, dry area, away from your home’s air intakes.