Public Safety

Safety Around Generation Facilities

Dams and reservoirs, wind turbines, heat plant and landfill gas generation stations are used for the generation of energy.  All generating facilities can be interesting places to visit, however these areas may be dangerous to the unwary.

Observe these safety precautions around all generation facilities:

  •       Respect fenced and gates areas and observe all danger and warning safety signs

  •       Stay on designated trails and within marked observation areas

  •       Supervise children closely

Many utility services run underground for safety and aesthetic reasons, but out of sight shouldn’t mean out of mind. Digging close to generation facilities could result in serious injury or death. Always contact your local cable location service if you plan to do any landscaping or other work that involves digging or excavating.

Hydroelectric Sites

Some hazards are readily apparent and some are not. Hazards such as water flows, both upstream and downstream of dams and generating facilities, may change quickly and without warning. This can be particularly hazardous to swimmers, kayakers and anyone fishing.

As a rule remember to:

  •    Stay clear of all facilities including dams, powerhouses and all electrical equipment

  •    Stay outside of safety booms and buoys and away from all dam structures

  •    Be alert for changes in water levels

  •    Stay off dams or station structures unless Pioneer Energy has clearly indicated public                 walkways or observation points

  •    Stay well back from the edge of a waterway. Surfaces may be slippery or unstable

  •    Never stand, anchor or tie your boat below a dam due to rapidly changing water levels

  •    In winter, avoid walking on reservoirs near dams and generating stations. Ice forming near       a dam or hydroelectric station can be thinner and less consistent than ice in other                       locations  because of changing water flows beneath.

Boating Safety

Remember to look up and watch out for overhead lines around boat ramps, mast heads or when towing your boat on land. If a boat mast has brought down the power lines around a vehicle, the safest way to avoid electric shock is for the occupants to stay in the vehicle until help arrives.

If you are out on the water, always treat hydroelectric facilities and dams that are part of them, with respect.  Always pay attention to buoys and barriers and be aware that sirens, flashing lights and horns mean imminent danger. It is also important to obey any warning signs.

Lake Monowai is picture perfect and a very popular destination for swimming, picnicking and boating. If out boating on Lake Monowai, please use the signposted boat launch and landing areas. 


Wind is an abundant, natural, renewable resource and creates emission free energy. Wind turbines are safe, have no impact on livestock, do not create excess levels of noise and are compatible with the agricultural community.

Our wind turbines meet international engineering design and manufacturing safety standards. Potential public safety issues resulting from wind turbine operation may include falling ice. Blade throws and stray voltage is extremely uncommon. Members of the public should remain a safe distance from the turbines, especially during high wind, and observe  safety signage and barriers at all times.


District energy schemes and industrial heat and power clusters generate energy from a centralised energy centre which is distributed via insulated heating pipes, either above or below ground, to our customers.

Pioneer Energy’s thermal generation sites are housed within enclosed and locked buildings or gated yards and no unauthorised access is permitted.  In most instances, these sites look just like normal industrial buildings, but please heed the safety signage and barriers – they’re there to keep you safe.

Landfill Gas

New Zealander’s are increasingly turning to alternative forms of energy, and one exciting source is landfill gas.  Landfill gas generators use methane produced by the decomposition of organic materials in existing landfills to produce clean, renewable energy.

Pioneer Energy’s LFG generation sites are situated in fenced and locked enclosures and no unauthorised access is permitted.  Please remember to adhere to all safety signage and barriers at all times.

Further Information

The New Zealand Government Energy Safety website has helpful information to keep you safe around electricity and at electrical sites.