All modern offices and households cannot operate without electricity. Whether this electrical equipment is machinery or computers, everything has potential hazards. You can get injuries such as a burn or electrical shocks if used and maintained improperly. With these risks around electrical work, electricians remain in constant danger in their day-to-day work lives. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that 7,740 electricians and relevant workers in the private industry suffered on-job injuries in 2019. Although one cannot completely diminish these risks, the article gives you three basic tips to reduce them. You can avoid accidents by following the given safety tips when you or your staff are in the field to perform hazardous jobs.
Electrical safety tips
Proper electrician uniform
Safety clothing is necessary if you are an electrician or a field worker. An electrician uniform usually includes non-conductive clothes and proper shoes that have insulated insoles. Likewise, insulated gloves are also an integral part of your workwear as they protect your hands from the risk of electrical shocks and burns. Hard hats protect from falling debris and naked electrical wires if you are working in a construction setting.
Ocular gears are also important to keep your eyes safe from the side effects of welding. Flame-retardant quality is another vital requirement of an electrician’s workwear. OSHA guidelines direct electricians to use sufficient PPE (personal protective equipment). Besides the things that you should wear, there are some don’ts as well. For instance, avoid wearing metallic watches or jewelry, rings, loose clothing, and ornaments like neckties and scarves are a complete no if you work in the field or deal in electric equipment. Dangling sleeves or jewelry can not only get caught in wires but can also conduct electric current that is made of metal, both hazardous for your life.
Ensure safety before touching
Make it a thumb rule to check if an electrical component or a circuit is safe to touch. You can do it by testing it through a multimeter. It is a device that should be an essential part of an electrician’s toolbox. Multimeters provide a reading in volts to show the strength of the current flowing through an electrical component. Another precaution before touching a circuit is to make sure that the lines are disconnected. Ensure that you power off all the primary and secondary lines before starting your maintenance or installation work. OSHA has also issued a guideline of the Lockout/Tagout procedure that every electrician is obliged to follow before starting their work.
This procedure ensures that the power source is not just shut off but is padlocked too. You need to tag the padlock with the reason and your information. This will keep the other people from switching on the power unknowingly while you are working on the circuits and electric equipment. Last but not the least, use all the tools and electric devices with proper care. Make sure the plastic or rubber handles of your equipment are not broken or torn. Double-check your toolbox before using them during work.
Keep all liquids away from the worksite
Electricity and water do not get along. You don’t have to be a scientist to know this. However, many people forget these minor but fatal details in the chaos of daily work routines. However, if you are an electrician, you can not be careless regarding this fact. Make sure that your working place does not have puddles and dampness. Also, see if the equipment or the electric component that you are working on is not wet. Keep your hands dry. If your skin is prone to sweating, wear non-conductive gloves.
Non-conductive gloves keep the wetness of sweat away from wires. For more safety, also ensure that the room you work in has not lots of condensation. In some cases, you can not avoid working in a damp area. In that case, you must use GFCIs (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters). GFCI interrupts the circuit and keeps it from entering your body. They are lifesavers for electricians in a damp working environment. Therefore, make sure nothing and nowhere is water-logged when you are working with electrical components and circuits.
Electricity is a modern life norm. However, it is not something that you can play around with or not take seriously. It is especially not a joke if you are working in the field. If you are new in the field, and just plugging in your new career, ensure that you know at least all the basic electrical safety procedures when you are out on the field to work. Basic measures to use safety equipment, follow safety tips, rules, and wear proper electrician uniforms, can save you, your coworkers, and your clients from potentially serious accidents. Therefore, professionals recommend you take all the above tips seriously for a safe workplace environment.
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