Are you finding it harder and harder to get your electrical workers to work safely?
Younger electrical workers do not take on the responsibility for their electrical work?
The basic electrical training for electrical workers is not addressing electrical safety?
Our electrical apprenticeship system is letting the electrical safety our community down?
What do we need to do to make sure our electrical workers not only work safely but ensure the electrical systems they install and maintain are electrically safe?
The responsibility for electrical workers actions is being put on to employers more and more through legislation where an employer has to prove that their workers are competent even though they are qualified tradesperson who have had four years comprehensive apprenticeship training. The employer still has to prove that they have given the tradesperson the training and are competent in:
SITE RISK MANAGEMENT
To enable all risks to be eliminated or reduce to an acceptable level, work must not begin until all those involved are familiar with:
- The hazards associated with each task;
- The risk exposure involved; and
- The control measures to be adopted
A job briefing (Toolbox Talk) shall be performed prior to any work being commenced to ensure that all staff are aware of their roles and responsibilities.
SAFE WORKING ENVIRONMENT
Appropriate warning devices and protective barriers shall be in place at the work site prior to work commencing. Prior to any work commencing within buildings and underground it shall be treated as having live electrical cables including earthing conductors; cable locations shall be identified and treated as energized until proven otherwise with certification by an Electrician as de-energized (dead).
Identify overhead power lines and treat as live prior to using lifting plant.
CERTIFICATION & TEST
Before commencing of work and on completion of work on any installation, equipment, plant, apparatus and/or work environment that has the potential to cause harm, the required tests and certification must be conducted in accordance with established procedures:
- All Plant & Equipment to have current certification prior to being accessed or used; users of plant must be licensed or authorized.
- All Portable & Semi portable Electrical Tools shall have current Test & Tag certification with Residual Current Device RCD (Safety Switch) protection prior to use.
- Electrical Polarity and Final tests shall be carried out on all premises electrically altered.
PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT
All persons working at, or visiting a work site shall wear the appropriate Personal Protective Equipment PPE to ensure protection against injury, illness and occupational exposure. This will include, but is not limited to:
- Protective/High Visibility Clothing and head protection
- Ear, eye, foot and hand protection for the individual risk exposure
The whole electrical safety issue is becoming bigger than the universe and there only two ways to tackle the issue, one is to close down the business which is not an option; the other is the systems approach to develop and implement a total electrical safety management system.
What is great about systems however is that they are very duplicate-able-if you follow a system and implement the system – your chances of success are greatly increased.