Category: Electrical Safety

Electrical hazards can cause burns, shocks and electrocution (death). OSHA’s design safety electrical standards apply to systems that provide power and light to employee workplaces. These regulations cover electrical installations and equipment installed or used within or on buildings, structures, and other premises. OSHA’s safe work practice rules for electricity provide standards for both qualified employees (those with a specific level of training) and unqualified employees (those with little or no training) who work on, near, or with various electrical components.

NSC Congress & Expo Highlight: Electrical Safety a Shared Responsibility Between Employers and Contractors

How many times has your company asked a contractor to work on energized equipment? How many times has an electrician chosen to not turn a circuit off because it was an inconvenience? Have you ever worked with a contractor who has an attitude of, “Yes we can work it hot since our competition won’t do […]

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Q&A: Extension Cord Safety

Recently, we received the following question from a subscriber regarding extension cord safety: OSHA recently sent out a Letter of Interpretation explaining their views for extension cords on the manufacturer’s label stating “Do not plug one extension cord into another extension cord during use.” Does “during use” mean while the extension cord is energized? Or […]

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Take Steps to Prevent Arc Flash

Whenever workers are working on or near exposed live electrical conductors operating at 50 volts or more, they are at risk of arc flash—a potentially explosive release of electrical energy through the air that can cause serious injury or death. Here’s how you can prevent arc flash incidents and injuries. Make a Plan Employers should […]

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Don’t Let Arc Flash Cost You

A maintenance supervisor at a Wisconsin iron foundry was severely burned by an electrical arc flash in June 2013. The supervisor was injured while servicing a 480-volt circuit breaker without proper electrical protective equipment. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) cited the employer for a willful violation of electrical standards, alleging that the employer […]

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Be Inflexible About Flexible Cord and Cable Safety Measures

In October 2014, OSHA reinspected Wood Fibers, Inc., a wood pellet manufacturing facility in Niagara, Wisconsin, for the fifth time in 3 years. The employer had been cited for serious hazards in 2012, but late last year, conditions had not improved much. Wood Fibers was cited for four repeat and eight serious violations, including serious […]

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Be Inflexible About Flexible Cord and Cable Use

Sometimes, you need an electrical cord that bends a little. Maybe it’s because you have to use your power drill or saw in many different locations during the workday. Maybe it’s because a piece of machinery vibrates when it’s operating and you don’t want to transfer that vibration throughout your electrical system. Or, maybe it’s […]

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Laser Safety Best Practices

Lasers—intense, focused beams of nonionizing radiation—are in widespread use today. You can buy a laser pointer at your local drugstore to draw attention to your upcoming presentation. Bar-code scanners in retail cash registers use lasers to automatically retrieve the purchase price of consumer goods. Laser surgery clears our vision. We can use laser guidance and […]

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Essential Laser Facts

On January 5, OSHA announced the renewal of an alliance with the Laser Institute of America (LIA) to protect workers from exposure to beam and nonbeam lasers in industrial, construction, medical, and research workplaces. The word “laser” stands for “Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation.” Lasers are cavities that are filled with crystal, liquid, […]

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Healthy Products, Unhealthy Electrical Safety Work Practices

A 20-year-old employee at a manufacturer of rice cakes and other snack products was shocked while performing service work on an electrical panel on August 18, 2014. The employee missed 2 days of work. After hearing of the injury, OSHA inspected the facility and identified several problems with the employer’s electrical safety work practices.

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