Tips and reminders to ensure safe working conditions around electricity

RP news wires
Tags: workplace safety

The Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) is encouraging employers and employees to promote the importance of electrical safety during National Electrical Safety Month this May by increasing awareness of important safety issues.

Electrical hazards cause more than 300 electrocutions and 4,000 injuries in the workplace each year, disrupting lives and impacting the productivity of companies. While electrical hazards are not the leading cause of on-the-job injuries, accidents and fatalities, they are disproportionately fatal and costly. Most of these electrically-related fatalities and injuries could easily be avoided. Awareness of electrical hazards is critical to accident prevention and avoidance.

ESFI has created the Never Assume Safety Series to address the most critical workplace electrical safety issues.

“The Never Assume Electrical Safety Series represents a significant step forward for ESFI in addressing electrical safety in commercial and industrial settings and is a valuable resource,” says ESFI president Brett Brenner. “We chose the name Never Assume to remind people that they must take responsibility for their own safety. People who work on or around electricity can never assume that conditions are safe, but must proactively take steps to protect themselves everyday. Safety must be an integral part of how business is conducted.

No matter where you are working – whether it’s at a large manufacturing plant or on a small installation – the following guidelines serve as a helpful reminder of basic electrical safety practices:

  • Be sure you are properly trained and qualified for the job.
  • Plan every job and think about what could go wrong.
  • Identify the electric shock and arc flash hazards, as well as others that may be present.
  • Use the right tools for the job.
  • Isolate equipment from energy sources.
  • Test every circuit and every conductor every time before you touch it.
  • Work on electrical equipment and conductors only when de-energized.
  • Lockout/tagout and ground before working on equipment.
  • Treat de-energized electrical equipment and conductors as energized until lockout/tagout, test and ground procedures are implemented.
  • Wear protective clothing and equipment and use insulated tools in areas where there are possible electrical hazards.

“May is National Electrical Safety Month and a great opportunity to increase workforce knowledge of electrical safety issues,” notes Brenner. “Whether you are an employer, safety director, electrician, or maintenance professional - safety is the most important issue for anyone who works on or around energized equipment.”

For more information about ESFI and National Electrical Safety Month, visit

The Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) is dedicated exclusively to promoting electrical safety in the home and the workplace. ESFI proudly sponsors National Electrical Safety Month each May and engages in public education campaigns throughout the year to prevent electrical fires, injuries and fatalities.

About the Author