Electrical Safety

electrical-safetyElectrical current exposes workers to a serious, widespread occupational hazard; practically all members of the workforce are exposed to electrical energy during the performance of their daily duties, and electrocutions occur to workers in various job categories. Many workers are unaware of the potential electrical hazards present in their work environment, which makes them more vulnerable to the danger of electrocution.

Electrical injuries consist of four main types: electrocution (fatal), electric shock, burns, and falls caused as a result of contact with electrical energy.

via CDC – Electrical Safety – NIOSH Workplace Safety and Health Topic.

Electricity – a serious workplace hazard.

Danger electrical hazard-01Working with electricity can be dangerous. Engineers, electricians, and other professionals work with electricity directly, including working on overhead lines, cable harnesses, and circuit assemblies. Others, such as office workers and sales people, work with electricity indirectly and may also be exposed to electrical hazards.

Electricity has long been recognized as a serious workplace hazard. OSHA’s electrical standards are designed to protect employees exposed to dangers such as electric shock, electrocution, fires, and explosions. Electrical hazards are addressed in specific standards for the general industry, shipyard employment, and marine terminals.

via Safety and Health Topics | Electrical.

The Dangers of Arc Flash Incidents

arc_flashThe flash is instantaneous, almost too fast for the eye to comprehend. But the end result of this incident could be more than $15 million in direct and indirect costs to a company.

What is arc flash?

An arc flash is a short circuit through the air. When insulation or isolation between electrified conductors is breached or can no longer withstand the applied voltage, an arc flash occurs. As employees work on or near energized conductors or circuits, movement near or contact with the equipment, or a failure of the equipment, may cause a phase-to-ground and/or a phase-to-phase fault.

The temperature of an arc can reach more than 5000 F as it creates a brilliant flash of light and a loud noise. An enormous amount of concentrated radiant energy explodes outward from the electrical equipment, spreading hot gases, melting metal, causing death or severe radiation burns, and creating pressure waves that can damage hearing or brain function and a flash that can damage eyesight. The fast-moving pressure wave also can send loose material such as pieces of equipment, metal tools, and other objects flying, injuring anyone standing nearby.

via The Dangers of Arc Flash Incidents – MAINTENANCE TECHNOLOGY.

Electrical Safety – What is an Arc Fault and What Causes It

What is an Arc-fault?

An arc-fault occurs when loose or corroded connections make intermittent contact and causes sparking or arcing between the connections. This translates into heat, which will break down the insulation of the wire and can be the trigger for an electrical fire.

Unlike a short circuit, that is a hot wire coming into contact with a ground or neutral wire, arcing may not trip the circuit breaker. If you’ve ever heard a switch buzzing, hissing, or popping, you’ll know what I’m talking about. In order to protect your home, an arc-fault circuit interrupter can be used to detect just such a problem.

via Arc Faults – What is an Arc Fault and What Causes It.

Make Safety Priority One When Doing Home Improvement and Repair Projects

Safe Electricity urges all do-it-yourselfers to take precautions, especially when working around electrical equipment and overhead power lines. Make sure outdoor outlets are equipped with a ground fault circuit interrupter GFCI. Use a portable GFCI if your outdoor outlets don’t have them. It’s also a good idea to have GFCIs professionally installed in wet areas of the home, such as the kitchen, bath and laundry. Safety tips to keep in mind include:

  • Look up and around you. Always be aware of the location of power lines, particularly when using long metal tools like ladders, pool skimmers and pruning poles, or when installing rooftop antennas and satellite dishes or doing roof repair work.
  • Be especially careful when working near power lines attached to your house. Keep equipment and yourself at least 10 feet from lines. Never trim trees near power lines – leave that to the professionals. Never use water or blower extensions to clean gutters near electric lines. Contact a professional maintenance contractor.
  • If your projects include digging, like building a deck or planting a tree, call your local underground utility locator before you begin. Never assume the location or depth of underground utility lines. This service is free, prevents the inconvenience of having utilities interrupted, and can help you avoid serious injury.
  • Electricity + water = danger. If it’s raining or the ground is wet, don’t use electric power or yard tools. Never use electrical appliances or touch circuit breakers or fuses when you’re wet or standing in water. Keep electric equipment at least 10 feet from wet areas.

Make certain home electrical systems and wiring are adequate to support increased electric demands of new electric appliances, home additions or remodeling projects. Also, energy use is greatest in the hot summer months when air conditioning use peaks. An older home may be inadequately wired for today’s electrical consumption, putting your family at risk for fire and electrical shock. Replace worn and outdated circuitry and add enough outlets for appliances and electronics. Safe Electricity strongly recommends do-it-yourselfers to leave this project to the professionals.

via Make Safety Priority One When Doing Home Improvement and Repair Projects.