A disturbing side effect of electrification is the increasing number of electrical accidents. Over the years, there has been a big increase in the number of accidents in both absolute and per population terms. The rural public is a major victim of these accidents, which are largely caused due to contact with conductors in the distribution system or at non-industrial consumer locations. Poor design, sub-standard construction, poor maintenance and lack of safety awareness contribute to the increase of accidents. The attention given to many other challenges in the electricity sector – access, renewable energy, market or financial health – is unfortunately not given to electricity safety. National programs or policies do not provide clear targets or road maps to reduce accidents. Safety professionals give more attention to industrial safety and efforts of grass root organisations are more focussed on ensuring compensation to electricity accident victims. This discussion paper analyses the magnitude of the electricity safety challenge, the ‘who, where and why’ of accidents, identifies important governance gaps, and proposes some suggestions to reduce accidents.