Two ways to reduce the risk of working with electricity

Simangele Mzizi, 17 May. 2013

Tags: health and safety, compensation commissioner, how do i protect my employees from electricity shocks, electrical installation regulations



Did you know that each year employers report many electric shock accidents to the Department of Labour and the Compensation Commissioner? But your company can easily avoid these accidents with careful planning and simple precautions. Read on to discover safety measures you can use to reduce the health and safety risks that electricity usage poses to your employees…


Electricity can kill! That’s why you’re required to reduce the health and safety risks of your employees working with electricity.
 
Not only will this help you avoid compensation costs, but you’ll also ensure your workplace has a safe electrical system that complies with electricity safety standards.
 
Here are measures you can use to do this.
 
Two ways to reduce the risk of working with electricity
  1. Ensure the electrical installation is safe.
  • Install new electrical systems to a standard that’s prescribed by the Electrical Installation Regulations and maintain them in a safe condition.
  • Ensure your company has a certificate of compliance by the Electrical Installation Regulations. With this, “you’ll know whether your current electrical installation was tested and whether it complies,” says the Health and Safety Advisor. It’s important that an accredited electrical company registered with the Electrical Contracting Board of South Africa issues your Certificate of Compliance (COC).
  • Properly maintain existing installations by reviewing your risk assessments, doing regular earth leakage tests and ensuring your COC is current and up-to-date.
  1.  Provide safe and suitable equipment that complies with Electrical Machinery Regulations
  • Choose equipment suitable for its working environment.
  • Ensure suppliers provide safe equipment and then maintain it correctly.
  • Provide an accessible and clearly identified switch near each fixed machine to cut off power in an emergency. 
  • For portable equipment, use socket-outlets that are close by so workers can easily disconnect equipment in an emergency.
 Using these measure will help reduce the electricity health and safety risks for your employees…

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