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National Electrical Safety Month

According to Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) President Brett Brenner, “Electrical accidents that occur in an office environment are usually a result of faulty or defective equipment, unsafe installation, or misuse of equipment – specifically, extension cords, power strips and surge protectors.”

Common electrical hazards found in office environments:

  • Overloaded outlets
  • Unsafe/non-approved equipment
  • Improper placement of electrical cords
  • Live parts unguarded, such as broken/loose outlet plates
  • Pulling of plugs to shut off power
  • Blocking electrical panel doors

Tips to protect against electrical incidents at the office:

  • Even when using a surge protector, make sure the electrical load is not too much for the circuit.
  • Avoid overloading outlets with too many appliances. Never plug in more than one high-wattage appliance at a time!
  • Electrical appliances can be fire hazards! Be sure to turn off all appliances at the end of the day.
  • Inspect electrical cords once a month to ensure they are not frayed, cracked or otherwise damaged.
  • Inspect all covers on light switches and outlets, and have any damaged covers replaced by a qualified person.
  • Do not run electrical cords through high-traffic areas, under carpets or across doorways.
  • Consider having a licensed electrician install additional outlets where needed, rather than relying on extension cords and power strips.
  • Ensure all electrical equipment is certified by a nationally recognized laboratory and read all manufacturers’ instructions carefully.
  • Maintain at least 3 feet of clearance in front of all electrical panels.

Remember, safety begins with you!

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