Electrical Safety

Electrical Safety

Electrical safety is an important part of every workplace. Electrical hazards include burns, shocks, and electrocution. Workers that are affected by one of these hazards can also fall from heights as they lose control of their muscles.
These hazards can lead to serious injury and even death.

Controlling Electrical Hazards

OSHA enforces standards for the design and protection of wiring, components, and electrical equipment. These standards regulate the construction, placement, testing, and use of electrical equipment, wiring, cables, cords, pathways and other associated components.
Workers can be protected from many electrical hazards by limiting their exposure to live electrical equipment.

De-energizing equipment prior to work on the equipment eliminates the potential for burns, shocks, and electrocution. It is important to ensure that there are proper Lockout/Tagout procedures to prevent equipment from becoming energized while employees are working on the equipment.

Work on energized equipment must be limited to qualified employees who have been sufficiently trained and are adequately protected by the appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) . Qualified employees must be trained to recognize the exposed live parts of electrical equipment and determine the nominal voltage of exposed live parts.

Qualified employees must also know the clearance distances they must maintain for difference voltages they are exposed to. When working on energized parts, qualified employees must have sufficient lighting to view the work area and easily see the equipment and its hazards.

Hazardous (classified) locations present significant dangers for workers. Hazardous locations are work areas that contain flammable vapors, liquids, or gases or combustible dusts or fibers in quantities that are likely to ignite. Hazardous locations must be properly designated to indicate the hazards present. Any electrical equipment and wiring must be intrinsically safe and approved for or safe for the hazardous location.

Importance of implementing an active regulatory watch on electrical safety

Electrical safety encompasses many different OSHA standards. OSHA recently revised part of the electrical regulations and may choose to implement new safety factors in the future.

Since every workplace has potential electrical hazards, it is important to ensure that you are aware of the latest OSHA standards.

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