An electrical safety alert has been issued by the MSHA (The Mine Safety and Health Administration) after workers have been subjected to multiple burns and shocks. This has resulted in them being transported to hospital due to the severity of their wounds.
One of the incidents occurred when a worker received a minor flash burn to his eyes when he was working near a 480VAC circuit breaker, another incident occurred when a worker was shocked while he was repositioning a 575VAC water pump.
It has been stressed that electricians must follow the below rules:
- Do not conduct any electrical work until the circuit has been de-energized, tagged out and locked. Remember, this goes for installing and maintaining electrical equipment ad conductors too.
- Always be aware of the hazards of electricity and do not touch any ungrounded electrical components until you are 100% sure it is de-energized.
- Make sure to identify all hazards so you can then develop and follow a structurally safe plan to perform work and keep your workers safe. Always de-energize your equipment except for when necessary, for example, when trouble shooting or testing.
- Only handle cables that have been de-energized and are not live, and only wear well maintained and properly rated gloves if you are handling energized cables.
- Make sure you protect your electrical cables from damage made by mobile equipment and loose or falling roofs. If you suspect there has been any damage, notify a qualified electrician immediately so the damage can be corrected straight away.
- Remember to install sensitive ground faults with a trip setting of 125mA and always use trailing cables with a grounded metallic shield so you can ensure safety at all times.
- Wear properly suited PPE to protect yourself and workers against electric shocks.