Whiskey Creek couple wants answers after shock by live underground wires

Reporter: Sydney Persing
Published: Updated:

A dangerous mistake by Florida Power and Light (FPL) caused steam to spew out of a Whiskey Creek couple’s backyard. Workers went by to fix it, but weeks later the couple was shocked at the same spot where the steam was coming from.

“You can see the smoke coming from underground, it smells like it’s burning,” said David Oliver.

After Hurricane Irma, FPL replaced his underground power lines, but he says they left a few of those old wires still live.

“They were probably burning for about three or four months underground. But the only reason we didn’t know it is because they were so far deep,” said Oliver.

Now, he knows.

He says firefighters told him the power lines were so hot, they started boiling.

“They said the water was boiling and they piled the dirt up here and you could just see how hot the dirt was,” he said, making his grass look more like a hot spring.

FPL confirmed to WINK that they repaired those wires in July and say there’s nothing wrong right now. However, on Friday, Oliver said he noticed issues with his palm tree.

When he went over to take a look, he said, “The water was, you know, you can feel the water here and I stepped in the water and I go, ‘Wow, that’s hot.'”

Just seconds later, he got shocked.

Oliver described the experience as being “like when you take a battery and stick it on your tongue just to be funny and it jolts you, and you knew you got something, but you don’t know what it was. Very uncomfortable.”

Now, he’s worried for his and his neighbors’ safety and wants answers.

“Electrical lines run under a lot of the houses,” he said, “and I don’t know how many people even know they’re underground.”

Oliver would like to see FPL dig up and check the line. The power company says it sent a specialist to his home Monday morning, but that person didn’t find any problems.

Oliver says he’d like them to come back when it’s raining.


Copyright ©2023 Fort Myers Broadcasting. All rights reserved.

This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without prior written consent.