12 Precautions You Should Take When Using Electricity From Now

By Ann Hills / a couple of years ago
A close-up of an electrical outlet and plug

Electricity can pose a hazard to anyone, especially if it is mishandled or not maintained. Some major hazards associated with electricity are electrocutions or electric shock, burns, and fire. Electrocution occurs when electricity passes through the body, either when a person comes in contact with wires of an energized electrical circuit or being in contact with a metallic part that is energized by an electrical conductor.

For the purpose of electrical safety, people who are working on electricity are categorized as qualified and unqualified.

Qualified Individuals

A qualified person is somebody who is licensed to perform electrical works and who:

  • Had training on how to avoid and prevent electrical hazards when working with energized equipment, appliances, or tools;
  • Had been familiarized with the safety-related practices required by the Occupation on Safety and Health Association (OSHA);
  • Can determine exposed live parts of an electrical circuit; and
  • Has the knowledge of getting the voltage of an exposed live component.

Unqualified Individuals

Unqualified individuals are those people who have little to no training about electrical hazards. They may not be licensed but they should be given the training to understand:

  • Any electrical hazard or risk when they are using electricity;
  • The procedures that should be done when working with electricity;
  • The limitations on which tasks they can only work on compared with qualified people;
  • When and how to report any electrical issue;
  • What should be done during an emergency that is related to electrical issues; and
  • The importance of inspecting tools and equipment before using them.

Any live part should always be de-energized before any person should work on it unless de-energizing them can cause another safety hazard. Examples are deactivation of alarm systems or turning off illumination in the work area. Meanwhile, here are other precautionary measures that should be considered when using electricity:

Make Sure that Your Body is Dry

Oftentimes, we unconsciously forget this. Removing a plugged appliance while your hands are wet can post a safety risk and even cost you your life. Sometimes you are unsure if cables are open or some part of it may be broken, so when you touch it with wet hands, you will surely experience an electric shock. So the next time you plug or unplug that appliance or gadget, make sure your body, especially your hands are dry.

Do Not Use Broken Appliance or Equipment

As mentioned earlier, broken cables can cause electrical safety risks. Regularly check your appliances for broken parts or damaged cables or cords. Be sure to unplug them during the inspection and wipe them with a dry cloth. Replace broken cords with exposed wires if necessary.

Have a Professional Repair Your Broken Equipment

Unless you are licensed to perform electrical equipment repair, never fix your broken appliances. As mentioned by Fix Electrical contractors, trusting someone who is skilled and reliable for electrical issues is very vital.  If you are concerned about the prices for electrical repairs, local electricians can use a quote from Adrian Faull, owner of the mentioned electrical contractor services. This is better than spending on repairs because your place was caught on fire due to your negligence.

Turn Off Main Switch First

Make sure that before you plug a piece of equipment into the socket, be sure to turn off the switch before plugging it in. Also, keep all appliances turned off when not in use or unplug them to prevent electrical hazards.

Use Personal Protective Equipment

Electrician works

For those who work in electrical workshops, always protect your hands by using rubber gloves. This will reduce the risk of getting electric shocked. To avoid injury when working in high voltage areas, use a non-conductive headgear. Eyeshield and face shield should be used if there is an electrical danger posed to the eyes and the face.

Use Proper Wattage of Appliances and Equipment

Know the running watts or the operating power of your appliances to avoid power overload when you use them all at the same time. Power overload can lead to an electrical safety hazard like fire. As for lighting fixtures, using the correct light bulbs can prevent electrical problems. Follow ceiling fixture requirements, too.

Keep Electrical Equipment and Outlets Away from Water

Electric shock and injury can be prevented by keeping your electrical equipment dry and away from water and its sources to protect it also from any damage. Use isolators or fuse boxes and cases to protect circuit boards, wires, and circuit breakers that are located near wet surroundings. Check that they are also sealed and tightly closed especially if they are located in the outside environment because they are prone to moisture and even rain. When there is fire, never use water as electricity feeds on water. Use the correct fire extinguisher in such cases.

Give Space for Your Equipment to Breathe

Air circulation is also important for any electrical equipment, avoid running a piece of equipment inside an enclosed space and this can also pose a potential electrical fire hazard. Keep flammable items away from any electrical component or appliance.

Follow Appliance Instructions in Operation

Reading and following electrical safety instructions should be on the top list before using any electrical appliance or equipment. Knowing how to operate them safely will maintain good working performance, high efficiency, and low safety risk.

Always Read Warning Signs

Burning smells is a sign that something dangerous is going on. If you notice any signals of burning like warm outlets or unusual sound, immediately call for an expert for troubleshooting before it’s too late. Ensure that warning signs are installed at any working area that involves live cables, wires or equipment.

Electricity has always helped make our lives better but if you are not cautious and careful enough, it can also cause you trouble. Use these guidelines to protect yourself, your family, your colleagues, and your property from any electrical hazard. Safety should always be a priority when using electricity. Proper knowledge and correct usage of electrical tools, devices and equipment can help you save life and limb. Always ensure that the appliances and equipment are of required running standards  If you are not qualified to handle any electrical issue, always call for professional and technical help.

About the author

Ann Hills

My name is Ann Hills and I am a food blogger and a yoga teacher. When I was a child, I often got around my mother and watched her cooking in our kitchen. My mom always says to me that: “Kitchen is the heart of any home”. I strongly believe in her saying that’s reason why I prefer spending my money to make my home better than other stuff.

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