But even though electricity is a necessary part of every construction project, it’s also dangerous when handled incorrectly. Electrocution is no laughing matter. So, how do you safely work around and with electricity on the construction site? Here are four construction project electrical safety mistakes to avoid.
Improper grounding is one of the most common OSHA electrical violations. Before you start working, ensure your electrical equipment is properly grounded. This will drastically reduce the risk of electrocution and other electrical hazards. You should always use GFCIs (ground fault circuit interrupters) when necessary. Using them is especially vital when you’re working around water or other conductors.
Exposed Electrical Parts
In the middle of installing or changing aspects of an electrical system, you may expose some parts, like wires. If someone accidentally touches these exposed parts, they can suffer a shock or burn. You can reduce the likelihood of this happening by tagging exposed parts or placing barriers around them to keep others a safe distance away.
Working in Wet Conditions
Pure water is a poor conductor of electricity, but most bodies of water aren’t pure. They contain an abundance of ionic molecules that can conduct electricity. This means that working in wet conditions is extremely dangerous, because electricity will move quickly through the water and can shock anyone standing in a puddle. Avoid working in wet conditions whenever possible to lower the risk of electrical injury.
The next construction project electrical safety mistake to avoid is using unsafe equipment. Is your electrical equipment in good condition? Old and damaged equipment is more likely to malfunction than new or well-maintained equipment. If your equipment is in poor condition, send it in for repairs or replace it.
Not Following Rules and Regulations
You should always follow OSHA and the NFPA’s guidelines for working around and with electrical equipment. These guidelines change regularly, so even if you think you know them by heart, it doesn’t hurt to review them every once and a while to ensure your safety practices are up to date.
Need help with an electrical project? Dreiym Engineering’s team of electrical engineering experts is at your service. Contact us today to learn more about our services or to book a consultation.