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7 Common Electrical Hazards

July 26, 2010

Many electrical hazards exist, both at home and in the workplace. There are a few easy steps that you can take to significantly decrease your risk of an electrical fire or other hazardous occurrence. Check for these common electrical hazards, and correct them as soon as possible:

1) Check for electrical cords that are pinched behind furniture, such as couches, bureaus, or chairs.

2) Check for overloaded outlets (for example, if there is more than one appliance plugged into an outlet). Be especially careful when plugging in larger-sized appliances, such as hair dryers, space heaters, air conditioners, dehumidifiers, and other similar items. You can’t always just plug it in and expect there to be enough power available on that circuit.

3) Check for overloaded power strips. These are only designed to be used for a few low-power items. Also, never plug one power strip into another power strip.

4) Check for lamps and light fixtures that may have bulbs with a higher wattage than recommended. Most lamps and fixtures are designed to use a 60 Watt bulb at most. Bulbs of a higher wattage than what the fixture is designed for using is a leading cause of electrical fires.

5) Check for electrical cords underneath rugs, carpets, and furniture. Relocate the cords if necessary so they are not continually stepped on and worn down, compromising their insulation. Electrical cords should always be protected from physical damage.

6) Check for electrical cords that have frayed wires or cracked insulation. Dispose of them and replace them with a quality cord that bears a certification label of an independent testing laboratory (such as UL).

7) Check the size of your extension cords. Make sure that they are designed to handle the amount power that they are being used for. A tell-tale sign of an under-sized and over-used cord is if the cord is warm to the touch. Never use an extension cord for larger appliances such as your hair dryer, air conditioner, or space heater.

If you have any questions or concerns about any of the items listed above, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are here for you 24/7 and electrical hazards should not wait to be addressed fixed. We will be glad to answer any questions you have.

What are some common electrical hazards that you have seen? We welcome your comments!

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