The prospect of a bumper harvest in NSW this year has prompted Essential Energy to bring forward the launch of a new app which makes powerline locations and imagery available to the public online, at no cost.
The state-owned electricity infrastructure company has been concerned about the number of electricity asset strikes that have occurred in recent weeks.
The "Look up and Live" app, which delivers information via an interactive geospatial map, has been successful in Queensland, where there has been a 50% reduction in accidental contacts with power infrastructure in the agricultural sector.
Essential Energy expects the availability of the app will help anyone anyone working around or near the network with the tools and resources to plan for a safe operation.
The app provides the ability to search locations in real time and to overlay maps with third party mapping programs, or print, as required.
Essential Energy's head of operations, Sarah Roche, said the new tool's track record in Queensland was a major factor in the decision to bring its launch forward in an effort to reduce safety incidents ahead of a bumper harvest across NSW.
"The new app will provide additional support to farmers to safely plan any work that needs to be undertaken around powerlines," Ms Roche said.
"We're hoping the new tool will help minimise contact with the network and reduce the risk of injury or death from electrocution, as well as damage to equipment and our electricity network."
Energy Queensland experienced a 25% reduction on total safety incident numbers, a 35% reduction of overhead powerline contacts and a 50% reduction of accidental contacts in the agricultural sector.
Last Friday, Essential Energy convened a cross-industry workshop with stakeholders including NSW Farmers, GrainCorp, SafeWork NSW, Paraway Pastoral Co and the Aerial Application Association of Australia.
"The diversity of the group we brought together on Friday reflects our commitment to keep all people safe across the communities we operate in," Ms Roche said.
"This new tool is easy to use, practical and ready to go right now. We encourage everyone working around or near the network to visit www.lookupandlive.com.au or search for 'Look Up and Live' on the App or Google Play store to plan for a safe operation."