Mylar Balloon Sparks Power Outage in Kissimmee

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KISSIMMEE, Fla., January 15, 2015 – Kissimmee Utility Authority is urging customers to be aware of the dangers that can arise when Mylar balloons touch power lines, following a balloon release on Wednesday that knocked out power to more than 1,000 homes in Kissimmee.

Helium-filled balloons made of Mylar — a metalized nylon substance — can float into power lines, causing power outages, downed lines and damaged equipment.

Wednesday’s outage took place in Buenaventura Lakes, northeast of downtown Kissimmee.

Whether you’re celebrating a birthday, baby shower or other special occasion, KUA recommends these simple safety rules for handling metallic balloons:

— Be sure to secure a helium-filled balloon with a weight heavy enough to prevent it from drifting away.
— Never bundle metallic balloons together.
— Keep metallic balloons indoors and never release them outside.
— Never attach metallic streamers to any balloon, latex or metallic.

— Do not attempt to retrieve a balloon, or any foreign object, tangled in power lines. Instead, call KUA at (407) 933-9898 to report the problem.

Founded in 1901, KUA (www.kua.com) is Florida’s sixth largest community-owned utility powering 67,000 customers in Osceola County, Fla.

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Contact: Chris Gent
(407) 933-9836