Working With Electricity
Some general safety tips for working with or near electricity:
- Inspect tools, power cords, and electrical fittings for damage or wear prior to each use. Repair or replace damaged equipment immediately.
- Use cords or equipment that is rated for the level of amperage or wattage that you are using
- Be aware that unusually warm or hot outlets may be a sign that unsafe wiring conditions exists. Unplug any cords to these outlets and do not use until a qualified electrician has checked the wiring
- Place halogen lights away from combustible materials such as cloths or curtains. Halogen lamps can become very hot and may be a fire hazard.
- Know where the breakers and boxes are located in case of an emergency.
- Label all circuit breakers and fuse boxes clearly. Each switch should be positively identified as to which outlet or appliance it is for.
- Do not use outlets or cords that have exposed wiring.
- Always tape cords to walls or floors when necessary. Nails and staples can damage cords causing fire and shock hazards.
- Always use the correct size fuse. Replacing a fuse with one of a larger size can cause excessive currents in the wiring and possibly start a fire.
- Always use ladders made of wood or other non-conductive materials when working with or near electricity or power lines.
- Risk of electric shock is greater in areas that are wet or damp. Install Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (CFCI's) as they will interrupt the electrical circuit before a current sufficient to cause death or serious injury occurs.
- Make sure that exposed receptacle boxes are made of non-conductive materials.
- Do not use power tools with the guards removed.
- Do not block access to circuit breakers or fuse boxes.
- Do not touch a person or electrical apparatus in the event of an electrical accident. Always disconnect the current first.
Checklist for Basic Electrical Safety
Inspect Cords and Plugs
Check power cords and plugs daily. Discard if worn or damaged. Have any cord that feels more than comfortably warm checked by an electrician.
Eliminate Octopus Connections
- Do not plug several power cords into one outlet.
- Pull the plug, not the cord.
- Do not disconnect power supply by pulling or jerking the cord from the outlet. Pulling the cord causes wear and may cause a shock.
Never Break OFF the Third Prong on a Plug
Replace broken 3-prong plugs and make sure the third prong is properly grounded.
Never Use Extension Cords as Permanent Wiring
- Use extension cords only to temporarily supply power to an area that does not have a power outlet.
- Keep power cords away from heat, water and oil. They can damage the insulation and cause a shock.
- Do not allow vehicles to pass over unprotected power cords. Cords should be put in conduit or protected.