Avoid electrical hazards in the office
The high volume of electrical equipment in a typical office can expose workers to serious electrical hazards, including shocks, burns and fire, the Rosslyn, VA-based Electrical Safety Foundation International warns.
“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,” ESFI President Brett Brenner said.
To protect against electrical incidents, ESFI recommends:
- 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.
- Unplug appliances when not in use to save energy and minimize the risk of shock and fire.
- Inspect electrical cords once a month to ensure they are not frayed, cracked or otherwise damaged.
- 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.