What to Avoid When Working Around an Electrical Hazard?
With all the horror stories about electric shock, we receive many people calling us and they always as the same thing; what to avoid when working around an electrical hazard?
With our modern reliance on electricity, the possibility of electrical hazards at home is very high. Most electrical hazards occur due to exposed wires, inadequate wiring, improper grounding, overloaded circuits, and defective insulation. Therefore, it’s essential to take caution and follow safety precautions when working with electricity.
Safety Tips Around an Electrical Hazard
Here are the top five safety precautions when working around electrical hazards:
1. Electric Shock
Electric shocks are the most common electrical hazards at home. They happen when you come into contact with an electricity source. The electrical energy flows through your body, causing a shock. An electric shock can result in burns or no fatalities at all. If the current is strong, it can lead to death.
Common causes of electric shocks include faulty appliances, damaged or exposed electric cables, improper wiring, and grounding. Always shut off power in the breaker box before working to prevent an electric shock.
Ensure you also use insulated tools for electrical work to prevent current flow and avoid handling cords with exposed wiring. Only use cords with Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCI’s) in wet environments.
2. Electrical Burns
An electrical burn occurs when an electric current comes into contact with your body. When the current travels through your body, it can cause mild or severe damage to your tissues and organs. Electrical burns occur in several ways, including touching electrically live objects, short-circuiting, or falling into electrified water.
To prevent electrical burns, avoid using electrical appliances near running or standing water, don’t stick knives, forks, or any metallic object into electrical outlets or plugged-in devices, and replace any frayed or broken electrical cords. Ensure you also follow safety instructions when using electric appliances.
3. Electric Arc Blast
When electricity jumps from one connection to another, it results in a flash of light followed by a pressure wave. This wave is called an electric arc blast. Arc blasts are majorly caused by voltage spikes resulting from switching reactive loads. They also result from loose connections, insulation gaps, and corrosion.
Electric arc blasts lead to acoustic injuries, physical trauma, brain damage, and damage to appliances. To prevent this electric hazard, consider installing Arc Fault Circuit Interrupters instead of standard circuit breakers. AFCIs use advanced electronic technology to detect a wide range of arcing electrical faults.
4. Thermal Burns
Faulty, overloaded, and poorly maintained electrical equipment can get extremely hot and explode when shorted out. You may suffer thermal burns when you get too close to hot surfaces and may suffer severe injuries when you pull away quickly from hot surfaces.
Avoid operating electrical equipment in wet areas. Water significantly increases the risk of electrocution and thermal burns. Switch off power at the breaker, wear protective equipment such as gloves and safety boots before working on electric equipment.
5. Inadequate Wiring and Overload Circuits
Using inappropriate electric wires in your home can cause overheating and lead to fires. Ensure you use the correct electrical cables with the proper certification and the right electrical load. Overloading circuits can also be hazardous and lead to explosions, fires, and severe injuries.
Performing regular fire risk assessments will help you identify areas at risk of inadequate wiring and overloaded circuits. You also need to ensure you use proper equipment grounding to eliminate unwanted voltage and reduce the risk of electrocution.
Let Professional Electricians Help You Avoid Electrical Hazards
While you can handle minor electricity fixes using proper equipment, hiring a professional technician is crucial to ensure all underlying issues are dealt with. Electric hazards can be disastrous and lead to fatal injuries or even death.
At AC Electric, we have been providing electrical services to Northeast Ohio residents for over two decades. Our electricians have the necessary skills and experience to resolve any electrical issue you might have. Don’t hesitate to contact us if you need any help with your electrical system.