Electrical hazards are some of the most dangerous threats to any workplace. They can lie undetected for weeks, months, or even years before suddenly creating an emergency. But by getting regular electrical inspections and knowing what to watch out for, you can recognize potential problems and correct them before they cause real trouble.
Here are five of the most common electrical hazards in the workplace and tips to mitigate these risks.
- Tripped circuit breakers. Circuit breakers are designed to protect your electrical system when they get overloaded. If something draws too much power, too quickly, your circuit breaker will trip, shutting off that circuit before anything is damaged. This should be an irregular occurrence. If you’ve got machinery or equipment that’s causing your breakers to trip regularly, you need to upgrade your electrical system so it can handle the greater demand that’s being put on it.
- Warm wiring, cables, or cords. If you can feel considerable heat coming from any wire, cable, or cord, it probably means that it’s unable to handle the capacity of electricity flowing through it. This will eventually burn or melt the insulation away from the inside out, and is an indicator that electrical system needs an upgrade.
- Wet conditions. Never operate electrical equipment in wet locations. Water greatly increases the risk of electrocution, especially if the equipment has damaged insulation. Have a qualified electrician inspect electrical equipment that has gotten wet before attempting to use it.
- Over-reliance on extension cords. Extension cords are great for supplying power to areas that need it infrequently or to extend the reach of a corded appliance. But when extension cords become a permanent fixture, running along the base of a wall or across a room, it creates multiple problems. Often these cords are used because they provide multiple outlets, potentially overloading the circuit. If they run underneath of a carpet, they become fire hazards. And if they’re out in the open, they’re trip hazards. If you’re workplace is over-reliant on extension cords, contact an electrician to install new outlets where they’re needed.
- Faulty equipment. If a piece of electrical equipment gives off a strange odor, makes an unusual noise, feels hot, smokes or sparks, disconnect it immediately. Always unplug appliances when not in use to reduce the opportunity of electrical fire or shock.
To ensure that your workplace is free of electrical hazards, get regular inspections from a licensed electrician. If you find that you need to upgrade your electrical system to keep your facility and employees safe, please contact our experienced professionals.
About M.R. Electricians: Since 1996, M.R. Electricians has been serving the electrical needs of homeowners and businesses throughout Montgomery County, Washington, DC, Baltimore, and surrounding areas. The company also specializes in commercial fire protection, contract needs from small tenant fit outs to whole building installations, and motor controls for industrial spaces. From major renovations to the smallest of electrical jobs, the family-owned company is committed to providing high quality products, superior results, and unmatched customer service. Regarded as a leader in the electrical industry, M.R. Electricians has set the standard for excellence in the region. For more information, please visit the website at https://www.mrelectricians.us or call 301.871.0477.