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It’s the foundation of any electrical safety program: limiting the exposure of workers to the electrical hazards of shock and arc flash. Using test leads and clamps to probe inside a live panel when trouble-shooting and performing routine maintenance always exposes workers to danger. Electrical personal protective equipment (PPE) is a last line of defense and must never be relied upon as the primary method of protecting electricians and technicians. Safe work practices, including the use of non-contact test tools that do not require electrical workers to place them-selves in harm’s way, must first be considered when it comes to electrical safety.
Steps to keep electrical workers out of harm’s way:
The use of non-contact test tools greatly limits and oftentimes completely eliminates the need for workers to be exposed to the electrical hazards of shock, arc flash, and blast. Probing inside a live panel with hands, test leads, and clamps while attempting to locate measuring points, and then placing and holding test leads while turning and leaning to read a meter display, carries hazards. Many times two workers are required to accomplish this task, with the additional worker thus being exposed to the hazards. Providing a practical safe working area free of electrical hazards is the stated purpose of electrical safety standards.
Non-contact test tools can also help achieve that goal and create an electrically safer and more efficient work environment for employees.