General Electrical Hazard Safety

Most electrical accidents result from one of the following three factors:

  1. Unsafe equipment or installation;
  2. Unsafe work environment; or
  3. Unsafe work practices.

These accidents can be prevented through the use of:

  • Insulation
  • Guarding
  • Grounding
  • Electrical protective devices
  • Safe work practices

Insulation

Insulators such as glass, mica, rubber, or plastic used to coat metals and other conductors help stop or reduce the flow of electrical current. This helps prevent shock, fires, and short circuits. To be effective, the insulation must be suitable for the voltage used and conditions such as temperature and other environmental factors like moisture, oil, gasoline, corrosive fumes, or other substances, that could cause the insulator to fail.

Identifying Different Types of Insulation

Insulation on conductors is often color coded. Insulated equipment grounding conductors usually are either solid green or green with yellow stripes. Insulation covering grounded conductors is generally white or gray.

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