When compared to other industries, such as manufacturing or construction, most office environments are considered to have a lower risk in terms of electrical hazards. However, this doesn’t eliminate the risk of electrical hazards as a whole. An electrical hazard is a dangerous condition wherein a worker comes into contact with energized equipment or a conductor that could lead to injuries and causalities. Most of the time, industry owners and workers are unaware of the potential electrical hazards present in their work environment due to the lack of information, making them more susceptible and vulnerable to the possible accidents. Keeping in mind that people spend most of their time in their respective workspaces, it is important to eliminate any danger with the use of controlled measures. As an employer, it is very important to be cautious and ensure that the work space is as safe as possible.
Causes of electrical hazards
Most of the time, employees sustain injuries due to various electrical failures such as faulty or defective equipment, unsafe installation and misuse of equipment. Some of the typical causes are:
- Poor installation or maintenance: When electrical equipment is poorly installed or maintained without paying heed to the accompanying instructions that ensure their safety.
- Faulty wiring: Faulty wiring is difficult to detect with the naked eye. To avoid an issue such as this, you can conduct regular checks with the help of an experienced electrician who will help you fix the situation.
- Overloading outlets: While trying to cut costs, people tend to be thrifty. While this seems like a viable option for a period of time, they tend to jeopardise the working environment. Overloading outlets has been a common cause of electrical accidents across Australia for many years. The use of flexible leads and extension cables definitely makes the job easier but it only heightens the risk of damage.
- Poor quality equipment: People tend to compromise on quality while purchasing low end products that aren’t compatible with the wiring or products. Try looking at the bigger picture and purchase equipment that is tested and certified for Australian safety standards
- Improper usage: Educating the users about the proper use of any electrical equipment is vital in warding off any hazards associated with its use. Using equipment that is believed to be dead but is actually live, incorrect use of replacement fuses or using electrical equipment near a source of water or meddling with equipment with damp/wet hands can prove to be fatal.
Tips on finding an ideal office space and proper use of equipment
Being an employer comes with a great responsibility of ensuring that the work environment is productive and safe for employees. The first step is be to check office space is electrically safe before you rent or buy. After which, the responsibility shifts to the employee who then has to be cautious while handling any electrical equipment. A few tips for employers and employees would be to:
- Check the premises: Double check that all the wiring and the electrical equipment which will be used in the due course is safe for their intended purposes in working activities. The landlord has the liability of ensuring that the property that is rented out is safe and has adequate working conditions. Always verify whether the electrical work was done by trained professionals so as to ensure safer working conditions. You may require the assistance of a professional electician to help you survey the premises, particularly if it’s old or hasn’t been in use for some time.
- Regular cleaning: Regular dusting and cleaning is a must as dust can cause problems and be a fire hazard if it builds up in a small area with little ventilation. This has the added advantage of making the work environment look and feel cleaner, paving the way for a healthier, happier workplace.
- Alarm system: Your workspace must have functioning alarms. These alarms set off in case of any smoke, fire or explosion and act as triggers to an impending disaster that can be avoided. Water sprinklers and feasible emergency exits are an add-on.
- Don’t overcrowd: Never assemble too much electrical equipment near each other as it produces a lot of heat, and a cramped space filled with both people and machines can make room for a lot of potential hazards. Thus, ensure that your office space can comfortably accommodate the all of the electrical equipment that you require.
- Quality check: Ensure that the electrical equipment has qualified the necessary checks and meets Australian safety standards before being brought into the office premises for use.
- Professional help: Engaging in professional installation, regular maintenance and inspection of the electrical equipment will cut down the chances of an accident by more than half! Followed this up by repairing or isolating any faulty parts immediately.
- Educate your employees on electrical hazards: Educating and training all employees to make sure that they are aware and well-versed with the information on electrical safety and proper use of the electrical equipment. Prevent any live parts of electrical equipment from being accessed during normal operations.
Seeking professional electrical help
Seeking professional help is always a wise and reliable solution when it comes to the technicalities of electrical work. Experienced electricians will be able to provide better guidance. If you happen to be looking for an Electrician in Victoria Park then Thornbury Electric’s experienced and licensed electricians are here to help. With over 30 years of experience of serving residential and commercial customers, we are well-equipped in any situation. Our friendly and dedicated team of electricians offer a full range of electrical services, data and phone cabling and appliance repairs to customers across the Perth metropolitan area. A few of the services that we offer are:
- Electrical appliance service and repair
- Electrical installations
- Electrical repairs and maintenance
- Gas oven and stove repair
You can contact Thornbury Electrics on (08) 9367 8840 today for prompt, friendly and efficient service. Alternatively, you can look up our website www.thornburyelectrics.com.au for more information on our services.