According to commercial renovation, contractors in Toronto construction sites tend to be full of electrical and fire dangers. Fires on construction sites happen too frequently, and they create a tremendous risk of severe injury or even death of the workers on site. Construction site fires also pose a threat to the general public as well as the property around a job site.
Damage to both the worksite and the area around can add up to high, unforeseen costs to a construction company. The awareness programs for electrical and fire hazards on construction sites have significantly grown through recent years as frequent incidents of fires and accidents take place on an everyday basis. Improvements in construction site procedures and safety precautions are already making a huge difference, but there’s also space for more. ASASA Constructions ensures the compliance of all the safety measures, whether it’s a commercial project or a residential one.
Some of the critical areas of concern in terms of danger of electrical fires are, whenever any, high-wattage power tools are utilized. The potential for an electrical fire is high whenever portable generators are bringing electricity to the job site or when a new electricity system is being installed and tested in the building.
Why Should We Eliminate Electrical Hazards?
Working around electricity can tend to be very safe when workers accurately find and control hazards on the job site. But, inadequate training, lack of experience, and failing to recognize potential risks could result in an electric shock or even death.
The construction industry has the most danger of electrical hazards. The cause of main incidents and fatalities are by direct contact with the overhead power lines and direct communication with machines, tools, and hand-carried metallic components. So how can we protect ourselves against the potential dangers?
Electrocution is one of the most common hazards in commercial renovation services in Toronto. Diagnosing electrical hazards can help raise awareness of the dangers, their severity, and how harmful it can be for the workers.
Here we bring you some of the most common electrical hazards in the workplace and tips on what you should do minimize these potential dangers:
Overhead Power Cables
Overhead powered and energized electrical wires have high voltages, which can cause massive burns and electrocution to the site workers. Remember to maintain a minimum distance of at least 10 feet from overhead power cables and the nearby equipment. Conduct site surveys to assure that nothing gets stored under overhead power cables. Safety barriers and should install signs to warn the non-electrical workers of the hazards present in the particular site area.
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Flawed Equipment and Tools
Exposure to faulty electrical tools and equipment can turn out to be very dangerous. Do not try to fix any electrical component unless you are qualified to do so. Thoroughly check for cracks, cuts, or scrapes on cables, wires, and cords. In the case of any faults, have them repaired or wholly replaced. Lock Out Tag Out (LOTO) operations should be implemented at all times before initiating any electrical repairs and maintenance. LOTO procedures are there to protect all the workers on a worksite.
Faulty Wiring and Overloaded Circuits
Using wires that have inappropriate size for the current can lead to overheating and fires. Use the correct cable suitable for the function and the electrical load to work on it. Utilize the right extension cord designed for heavy-duty use. Also, do not overload an outlet and install proper circuit breakers. Perform daily fire risk assessments to identify areas at risk of lazy wiring and circuits.
The typical electrical violation is the improper grounding of the on-site equipment. Proper grounding can eradicate unwanted voltage and minimize the hazard of electrocution. Do not remove the metallic ground pin under any circumstances as it is responsible for returning adverse current to the ground.
How to Avoid Any Accidents on the Worksite
Wear the Right Protective Gear
Assure that all of your site workers are appropriately equipped with protective gear to reduce the danger of being exposed to any electrical hazards. Ensure that the site workers wear properly insulated head protection to evade contact with overhead cables that are approved. Your workers will require face protection and eye protection to lower any injuries caused by the arc blast. Wearing insulated hand protection is also very critical to stopping the flow of electricity if any direct contact made with energized equipment. You should also build an emergency contact list as well as keeping a first aid kit that is always available to the employees.
Avoid Accidental Electrical Contact
Most job and industrial sites have a variety of crews working on them at the same time. Here are some simple precautions that you can take to evade accidental electrical contact during the commercial renovation process:
- De-Energize the Electrical Elements
If you are not using an electricity system, then it only does not have to be energized. Make sure that you shut the off till you need to use it.
- Construct a Barrier
Assure that you install insulation components like rubber mats and conduit around any electrical parts. Place signs of letting the workers know of the areas which can have potential electrical hazards.
On-site Fire Extinguisher
Assure to provide the correct type of fire extinguishers on-site for the specific tasks the employees will perform. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration stated five significant kinds of extinguishers available for your workplace and personal usage. Fire extinguishers vary from A to E, but type C are the ones used for any electrical fires - whether caused by electric motors, fuse boxes, or the welding machines. Assure to have them on hand whenever electricity is in use at your worksites.
Maintain a Competent Training and Supervision System
Assure to provide thorough, up-to-date training and supervision for all of the employees, especially those working in direct contact with electricity. Give close attention to new employees so that you can ensure they know how to handle themselves around any high voltage equipment.
Safety During Welding
The welding, cutting, and brazing procedures can produce extremely hot flying particles and sparks. Showers of sparks can move the molten metal far away from the work area where they are not seen and could initiate a fire. Put shields around the welding site to avoid any accidents. Remove all combustible elements, liquids, and containers from the site area. Position tool cords safely and assuring that sparks or molten metal do not burn any power cords.
Knowing your limits and following the best electrical safety practices can help minimize the possibility of electrical shock and death, especially when renovating old commercial buildings. It is safer to work within your expertise instead of taking the risk of working beyond your ability. If you are not confident enough to do the job, do not hesitate to call for help from an expert.
Instead of relying on your memory, make a checklist when practicing electrical safety in your workplace. A digital list is a potent tool that can perform as a guide for the work near electrical equipment and hazards.