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Electrical hazards on the job are more common then most people realize. Workers are exposed daily to electrical energy and many are unaware of the potential electrical hazards making them more vulnerable to the danger of electrocution. According to OSHA there are nearly 350 on the job electrical related deaths every year.

To help workers stay safe they need to understand the most common causes of electrical injuries and deaths listed by OSHA.

Generators, often used on construction sites are powered by gasoline or diesel to turn an alternator to produce electricity. Generators can be extremely dangerous if not used properly. They produce carbon monoxide a odorless gas that can cause headaches, loss of consciousness and even death if inhaled. OSHA states that generators should be used outdoors in a location where the exhaust gases cannot enter a home or building. Good ventilation is the key to operating a generator safely.

Extension cords can cause on the job injuries if the cord is worn and wires become exposed. extension cords that are not three-wire type or have been modified are not designated for hard use and can increase the risk of electrical shock. Only use extension cords that have been approved by a nationally recognized testing laboratory.

Worn electrical equipment can cause insulation breaks, short-circuits and exposed wires. in addition according to OSHA, if the equipment lacks ground fault protection it can cause a ground-fault that can send electrical current through a workers body. OSHA suggests using ground-fault interrupters on all 120-volt, single-phase, 15 and 2-ampere receptacles that are not on an existing buildings permanent wiring. In addition, using double insulated electrical tools and inspecting all equipment before use. If a tool has missing prongs, frayed cords or cracked casings, remove it from use.

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