May is National Electrical Safety Month and the following information from the National Safety Council can help you get started in assessing your workplace’s electrical safety knowledge.
Sound safety practices can help minimize electrical hazards and cut down the risk of accidents. The hazard of electricity cannot be eliminated, but it can be controlled through education and engineering. The more you understand about electrical energy, the safer you will be at work and home.
What causes electric shock?
You can get an electric shock if you touch a grounded surface and hazardous electrical equipment at the same time. The shock happens when the flow of electric current (amperage) from the electrical equipment goes through your body to the ground. How serious the injury depends on what part of your body receives the current. It also depends on how long the electric current flows. Just a small amount of amperage can hurt or be fatal.
12 Questions to Assess a Safe Workplace
- Are you aware only trained, qualified and authorized employees are permitted to work on electrical equipment?
- Has an electrician inspected the equipment, tools, machines and lights to make sure they operate according to electrical code requirements?
- Are extension cords and appliance cords in good repair and are properly rated for the way they are intended to be used?
- Are you using 3-prong receptacles for 3-prong plugs?
- Are you protecting yourself with Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCI) in wet/damp areas like kitchens, bathrooms and outdoors?
- Are you protecting your equipment and home with circuit breakers?
- Are you closing electrical control panels and covering receptacle boxes?
- Do you avoid touching water, damp surfaces, ungrounded metal and bare wire if you are not protected?
- Do you avoid working in and around wet or damp conditions, equipment and electrical current that are not grounded, and wires that are not insulated?
- Do you use equipment and tools the way they are designed to be used?
- Do you report immediately any damage or defective equipment, power hand tools or machinery?
- Are you looking for posted signs that identify electrical hazards? Are you following lockout/tag out procedures?
Working Together for Safer Communities
Consumers Energy is a founding member of the National Safety Council for Industrial Safety at the 1912 Congress. The safety of our employees, customers and the public is a top priority at Consumers Energy. Learn more about safe digging, pipeline safety and storm safety at www.ConsumersEnergy.com.