Atlanta Streetcar system powers up

The Atlanta Streetcar system will take a leap forward this week when the overhead power system becomes energized Friday.

The overhead wires that provide the electricity through the Overhead Contact System will remain energized as tests proceed over the next few weeks. The public should use caution around the system’s wires and poles, which carry a potentially deadly 750-volt current.

The power system poses no danger to the average person walking down the street. However, utility workers and movie crews will need to be wary if they use lifts or elevated equipment to do any sort of work, said Sharon Gavin, a spokeswoman for the Atlanta Streetcar.

The public is advised to stay 10 feet away from the live wires at all times, and never attempt to climb the poles, touch the wires or throw things at them.

The Streetcar system will continue to undergo a series of tests in coming weeks. Both the infrastructure and vehicles must be certified as safe by the city of Atlanta and accepted by the State Safety Oversight Agency before passenger service can begin.

Officials expect service to start sometime in late summer.

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