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Electrical Safety Dos and Don’ts

Electrical Safety Dos and Don’ts
Electrical Safety Dos and Don’ts

Electrical Safety Dos and Don’ts



Electrical Safety Dos and Don'ts: Electric power used in offices, workplaces and homes can cause serious injury to people through electric shock. Even most fire incidents are caused by a short circuit.
Electricity tend to form a easiest closed path from power sources to device and back to the power source, it is called electric closed circuit. Current always tries to move or complete the circuit in the shortest route. When the human body comes in contact with electrical energy, it serve as a conductor and forms the closest path to complete the circuit by grounding, resulting in electric shock or burn.
When the human body comes in direct contact with exposed live conductors, the electric current forms the shortest path and travels through the body to a ground, it affects the nervous system and contracts the muscles, the heart can therefore stop beating and lead to heart failure.
Burns can occur from exposure to electric arcs or the heat generated by an electric arc. It can burn both external and internal tissue.
It is important to note that electric shock can only be caused if the circuit is completed. Suppose someone flips two wires in a live circuit, then the body becomes a conductor and the person causes an electric shock. Suppose a person touches only one live wire while standing and has not completed the circuit due to wearing non-conductive shoes, then the person will not cause an electric shock, but when touching the other metal objects or stands unprotected, it causes electric shock due to earthing or completing the circuit.
The severity of injuries caused by electricity depends on the amount of current flowing through the body, the shortest current path, the duration of contact, and the frequency of the current.
Overheating, earth leakage, overloading and arcing from loose fittings are the main causes of electrical fires. A dust explosion or an explosion of flammable vapor clouds may also occur due to ignition by electrical sparks. Besides this dynamic electricity (the uniform movement of electrons through a conductor), static electricity is also a major cause of fires and explosions in oil and gas installations.
Electrical safety is the ongoing practice and process of identifying electrical hazards, assessing the risks, and implementing controls to prevent electrocution, burns, or other injury. It formulates the guideline to prevent, mitigate electrical hazards and minimize the severity of consequences.
Incompetence i.e. inadequate training and qualification, lack of knowledge and experience in handling electrical equipment, and failure to identify hazards can be the main cause of injuries.
Safety Dos and Don'ts provide a great way to educate workers in the workplace. All safety measures that need to be communicated to workers should be written in plain language so that they can understand it and are easy to implement in the workplace.

Electrical Safety Dos and Don’ts

Here are general Electrical Safety Dos and Don'ts that can be communicated to workers and staff to understand electrical hazards and ensure safety precautions in the workplace.

Do’s

  1. Follow the electrical isolation procedure for handling any electrical equipment.
  2. Check Lock Out-Tag Out (LOTO) in each isolation.
  3. Make sure that each group working on the equipment has their LOTO.
  4. Provide physical evidence or proof of isolation.
  5. Use rubber mats for high voltage gear operations.
  6. Repair electrical equipment only by authorized personnel.
  7. Carefully inspect equipment prior to normalization.
  8. Insulate all junction joints and make sure there are no breaks.
  9. Use the appropriate connection pins for the relevant equipment.
  10. Know how to use electricity safely.
  11. Use only cables or wires or cords of the proper gauge for a particular equipment according to its load requirements.
  12. Read the equipment manual before use.
  13. Make sure there are no cuts or joints, cracks, abrasions on the cables or wires.
  14. Wear electrically resistant gloves and equipment.
  15. Make sure that the ELCB or GFC or right rating.
  16. Arrange or lay electrical cables correctly to avoid tripping and falling.
  17. Maintain a minimum distance of 10 feet from overhead power lines.
  18. Install safety barriers and signs to warn all workers or occupants nearby.
  19. Repair or protect damaged insulation immediately.
  20. Ensure proper grounding of electrical equipment.
  21. All electrical equipment and appliances should be inspected regularly by a qualified electrician.
  22. Turn off the equipment immediately if you feel any abnormally hot plugs or cords.
  23. Must know where the panel and circuit breakers are, which helps in an emergency.
  24. Clearly label all circuit breakers and fuse boxes.
  25. Each switch must be positively identified with respect to the outlet or device for which it is intended.
  26. Keep power cords away from tools during use.
  27. Replace open front plugs with dead front plugs. The dead front plugs are sealed and present less risk of electric shock or short circuit.


Don’ts

  1. Don’t use electrical equipment in wet floor or location.
  2. Don’t overload electrical outlets or accessories.
  3. Don’t use non-standard devices.
  4. Don’t assume that the power is disconnected.
  5. Don’t attempt to repair damaged electrical equipment unless you are qualified to do so.
  6. Don’t place halogen lamps near combustible materials to prevent fire hazard due to heat.
  7. Don’t use metal ladders when working with or near power lines or power lines.
  8. Don’t plug a two-prong adapter into a three-prong outlet and a two-wire cable with a three-prong plug.
  9. Don’t remove the ground pin as it is responsible for unwanted voltage return to ground.
  10. Don't piggyback ie. connect multiple extensions together.
  11. Don’t use an earth connection as a neutral.
  12. Don’t use outlets or cords with exposed wiring.
  13. Don’t use portable power tools connected by cord and plug with the guards removed.
  14. Don’t block access the access to panels and circuit breakers.
  15. Don’t use underrated or oversized fuses.
  16. Don’t overload an outlet and use appropriate circuit breakers
  17. Don’t use random switches without familiarity.
  18. Don’t remove the ground connections until the circuit is dead.
  19. Don’t insert bare wires into electrical outlets for power.
  20. Don’t energize without permission from all parties.
  21. Don’t connect switches to sockets without ELCB, GFCI, Trip protection.
  22. Don’t work a minimum distance from overhead power lines.
  23. Don't ignore any signs and electrical warnings.
  24. Don’t store any material under an overhead power line.
  25. Never attempt to rescue a person with bare hands if it has become entangled with energized equipment, use non-conductive means to remove it.
  26. Don’t lay the portable cable on the ground when crossing the road to avoid mechanical damage and avoid tripping.
  27. Don’t use nails to tape extension cords to the wall or floor.
  28. Don’t use light duty extension cords in a non-residential situation.
  29. Don’t carry or lift electrical equipment by the power cord.
  30. Don’t tie cords in tight knots. Knots can cause short circuits and shocks. Loop the cords or use a twist lock plug.


Summary

Electrical  Safety Dos and Don'ts can be shared with workers in a toolbox talk meeting to make them aware about the proper use of electrical appliances, equipment, tools and hazard associated with all these items. A safe work practices can be communicated in the form of Safety Dos and Don’ts to ensure safety measures and to avoid injuries caused by electric shock. These safety do's and don'ts can be posted in the workplace to remind workers of the safe uses of electrical equipment and keep them alert.

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