The efficiency of the energetic network is a very import safety issue in the region experienced by the earthquake. High voltage disconnecting switches are important elements of the energetic infrastructure used to separate electric circuits (i.e. during repairs), which should not be damaged remaining fully operational. The aim of the paper is to show the results of the shaking table experimental investigation focused on damage mechanism of a high voltage disconnecting switch under seismic excitation. The real example of the two-column pantograph-type disconnecting switch was considered in the study. First, the tests were carried out by exciting the unit with the sweep-sine function. Based on the results, the structural dynamic properties of undamaged structure (natural frequencies, damping ratios) could be determined. Then, the so called rumbling seismic tests were conducted in order to determine the seismic strength of disconnecting switch according to the standards PN-EN 60068-3-3. After each experiment, the sweep-sine test was carried out so as to check the decrease in the natural frequencies of the unit. The results of the study show that the lower parts of the columns, which serve as isolators, are the most critical locations of the disconnecting switch considered. The unit was damaged due to failure of one of the rotational mechanisms installed at the bottom of columns.