Everyone has those days where they get tired at work and stop paying close attention or try to cut corners to finish a job faster. Certain professions, however, such as those that involve working with electricity, simply do not allow for lazy days. In a number of high-risk industries, failing to take every necessary safety measure could result in serious injury or fatality for a worker.
The Fluke Corporation recently released its list of “10 dumb things smart people do when testing electricity.” The list detailed shortcuts that even the most seasoned electricians have been known to take at one time or another. Fluke urged anyone who works with electricity to prioritize safety over getting a job done on time and never cut corners that could increase their risk of injury.
What Not to Do When Working With Electricity
Among Fluke’s top mistakes electricians make are:
- Working on a live circuit: Electricians should always make sure a circuit is de-energized. If it is not possible to do so, they must at least wear the proper safety clothing.
- Using outdated test tools: Safety features are constantly updated, and it is in an electrician’s best interest to get the most modern tools available.
- Failing to wear the proper protective equipment: The right clothing could be the only thing between the worker and serious injury. According to the Workplace Safety Administration, most injuries and fatalities related to burns are the result of non-flame resistant clothing.
- Using a cheap digital multimeter: Using a cheap DMM could injure the electrician as it likely does not have the best safety features.
- Using a piece of wire or metal to replace a fuse: This is not worth the risk of injury. Electricians should take the time to acquire a new fuse if they do not have one immediately available.
What Electricians Should Do Instead
According to HealthDay, a health news publication, too many electricians forget to turn off the power before they start their work. Always make sure to do so, and also make sure to turn the switch or circuit breaker off. Taking these two precautions will help prevent a worker from becoming severely burned due to an arcing fault or flash.
In addition, always make sure you are using the most updated safety tools and the best possible equipment. Electric work is not a time to be frugal. The added time and expense could save your life.
Finally, always wear the right personal protective equipment. Electrician information website Powered Electrician explained the importance of wearing both insulating and protector gloves as well as protection for the eyes, head and feet.
Different equipment is designed to protect workers against different electric conditions, so workers should make sure the equipment they use is appropriate for their specific working conditions. For example, insulating gloves come in two types. Type 1 is not ozone resistant and won’t protect against UV rays, though it allows a worker more flexibility. Type 2, while not as pleasant to wear, does provide that ozone protection.
Safety is a Value
Safety is not just a priority. Priorities can change. Make safety a value. It is not what you do; it is an entire approach to work. Do the job, always make the safe decision, and keep yourself and your co-workers injury free. Everyone deserves to go home injury-free at the end of their workday.
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