precautions while using electrical equipment

Precautions while using Electrical Equipment

Safety Rules for Working with Electrical Equipment .
31. One hand face and body to side
Use one hand with your face and body turned to the side when operating a safety switch. Limit possible injuries by not placing body parts directly in front of energized equipment when there is danger of an arc flash. If a device has a metal enclosure or other exposed metal parts then there is a danger that these exposed metal parts could become live during a fault and this could itself cause an electric shock. The voltage on the exposed metal parts during a fault is known as the Touch Voltage.
32. When you re in awkward positions
Avoid electrical contact when working in awkward positions. If you must work in an awkward or unbalanced position and reach with your tools, use insulating cover up material on the tools to avoid contact with live conductors. There is a device which can protect you even in these circumstances. This is known as a residual current device (RCD) or a ground fault interruptor (GFI). This measures the current to the load, in the phase conductor, and the current coming back from the load, in the neutral conductor, and if there is even a small discrepancy it assumes this is a fault current to earth or ground and switches off the supply. For protection against electric shock devices rated at 30 mA are reccommended as this is less than the current needed to stop a human heart.
33. Equipment and clothing
Use the correct safety equipment and clothing. Remeber: gloves, clothes and shoes. Electrical cables and equipment are not 100% efficient. For every kiloWatt of power passing through there will be a few watts of heat dissipated in the cable due to the resistance in the copper (or other) conductors and the losses in electronic components. This heat will cause the equipment to heat up. How much it heats up depends on how fast the heat is conducted away from the cable or the equipment.
34. Electrical Safety
Electrically powered equipment, such as hot plates, stirrers, vacuum pumps, electrophoresis apparatus, lasers, heating mantles, ultrasonicators, power supplies, and microwave ovens are essential elements of many word areas. These devices can pose a significant hazard to workers, particularly when mishandled or not maintained. Many electrical devices have high voltage or high power requirements, carrying even more risk. Large capacitors found in many laser flash lamps and other systems are capable of storing lethal amounts of electrical energy and pose a serious danger even if the power source has been disconnected.
35. Circuit Protection Devices
Circuit protection devices are designed to automatically limit or shut off the flow of electricity in the event of a ground fault, overload, or short circuit in the wiring system. Fuses, circuit breakers, and ground fault circuit interrupters are three well known examples of such devices. Fuses and circuit breakers prevent over heating of wires and components that might otherwise create hazards for operators. They disconnect the circuit when it becomes overloaded. This overload protection is very useful for equipment that is left on for extended periods of time, such as stirrers, vacuum pumps, drying ovens, Variacs and other electrical equipment.
36. What are the risks from electricity
Harm can be caused to any person when they are exposed to live parts that are either touched directly or indirectly by means of some conducting object or material. Voltages over 50 volts AC or 120 volts DC are considered hazardous. Electricity can kill. Each year about 1000 accidents at work involving electric shocks or burns are reported to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Around 30 of these are fatal, most of them arising from contact with overhead or underground power cables. Shocks from faulty equipment can cause severe and permanent injury and can also lead to indirect injuries, due to falls from ladders, scaffolds, or other work platforms.
37. Who is most at risk from electricity
Anyone can be exposed to the dangers of electricity while at work and everyone should be made aware of the dangers. Those most at risk include maintenance staff, those working with electrical plant, equipment and machinery, and people working in harsh environments such as construction sites.
38. Legal duties and obligations around electricity
As well as a moral duty on employers to protect employees and members of the public, General Health and Safety Legislation covers all employers and workplaces. In addition, specific duties and obligations are laid out in the following regulations: The Electricity at Work Regulations 1989 These regulations apply to all aspects of the use of electricity within the workplace from electrical supplies to the use of electrical equipment.
39. Assessing the risks from electricity
Consider the following hazards in your risk assessment: Live parts Normal mains voltage, 230 volts AC, can kill. Also, contact with live parts can cause shocks and burns. Fire Electrical faults can cause fires. This is particularly true where the equipment contains a heat source (e.g. heaters, including water heaters, washing machines, ovens, heat seal packaging equipment). Flammable or explosive atmospheres Electricity can be a source of ignition in a potentially flammable or explosive atmosphere, e.g. in spray paint booths or around refuelling areas. Where and how electricity is used The risks from electricity are greatest in harsh conditions.
40. Basic electrical safety
Below are some minimum steps you should take to ensure electrical safety. Mains supplies. 1 install new electrical systems to BS 7671 Requirements for Electrical Installations. 2 maintain all electrical installations in good working order. 3 provide enough socket outlets for equipment in use. 4 avoid overloading socket outlets