You should always use caution when working near electricity. Most electrical accidents are caused by the following factors: unsafe equipment, a hazardous work environment, and poor work practices. Other types of incidents include injuries by electrocution, electric shock and burns. Ensuring electrical safety is especially challenging for manufacturing companies, large electrical contractors, hospitals, power generation plants, solar and wind power, data centers, food processing plants, breweries, bakeries, dairies, and paper and pulp manufacturers. Employees who work directly with electricity should be trained on how to use the required PPE including rubber insulating gloves, hoods, sleeves, mats and blankets, and protective helmets or full arc flash suits. Using the proper equipment like grounding devices and explosion proof lighting will make your electrical work safe. It is also important to maintain tools in a good working condition and to check them regularly to prevent them from deteriorating and becoming dangerous to use.
What tools can help you prevent accidents while working with electricity?
Here is a list of the recommended made-in-the-U.S.A. equipment from Stewart R. Browne.
1. Static Grounding Devices are used to prevent static electricity buildup and discharge.
“I have tried many clamps and this one is worth every penny. When there is paint or material that prevents you to reach the base metal for grounding, this clamp is perfect. It works every time. The adjustable tip is a great feature as well.”
a) The Grounding Clamp is a versatile product. It is a world standard for grounding or bonding small containers, drums, totes, machinery or personnel in areas containing flammable liquids and dust. The heavy duty die-cast aluminum handles with two stainless steel points and the 55 pound spring compression are the core of these grounding pliers. The advantage of this design is that it allows the clamp to get through multiple layers of paint and corrosion buildup, which makes the proper contact to bare metal effortless. The REB2960 model has a wide variety of applications, including situations when transferring flammable liquids between containers is needed, or while performing other maintenance operations where static-generated sparks could cause an electrical problem.
b) The Retract-A-Clamp coiled static grounding and bonding cable assemblies provide a cost-effective and an easy-to-use system. These assemblies incorporate a corrosion resistant, orange vinyl-coated coiled steel cable (for high visibility), and a choice of clamps (most popular is the REB2960 clamp mentioned above). The RAC assemblies with the REB2960 clamp use a 1/8 in. cable in 5 ft., 10 ft., and 20 ft. lengths. The RAC assemblies with either the GAT-P or G40PC clamps use a 3/16 in. cable. This assembly eliminates tangling of the assemblies that lie on the floor and create a tripping hazard. Coiled assemblies neatly and compactly retract out of the way when not in use.
2. Explosion Proof Lighting includes lights and fixtures specifically designed for use in the areas where flammable, explosive vapors, gases, liquids or pulverized dust are or may be present and create hazardous conditions. Their purpose is to prevent the ignition of fire or explosion. Suggested applications include offshore lights, rig lights, paint spray booth lights, etc.
a) The Incandescent Explosion Proof Work Light. The heavy-duty TUFFITE handle designed for high impact strength and chemical resistance makes it perfect for use in confined spaces such as tank cleaning and other industrial maintenance jobs. The aluminum guard and swivel hook are non-sparking which provides extra safety.
b) The Flood Light is UL Listed Class 1, Division 1, Group C and D light with a base, and a 50 ft. cord. The XP1530 comes standard with a 300 watt, 120 volt flood lamp. It is ideal for use in outdoor hazardous locations or large tanks. You can find these lamps in the toughest workplaces like refineries, military bases, and aircraft hangars.
Using proper grounding devices and explosion proof lighting will make your electrical work much safer.
You can find some additional information on electrical safety here: OSHA.gov
If you have questions about electrical protection equipment, please visit us online at www.pksafety.com or call us at 1-800-829-9580.