Plus: The ‘Trick’ to Electric Shock Prevention During Halloween
Even though an electric shock is not fatal, electric shock prevention is a goal that everyone should pursue because of the serious and life-altering injuries that can be caused by an electric shock.
Unlike electrocution which takes a person’s life, electric shock injures its victim. However, the injuries that result from electric shock are not insignificant. In fact, it is not uncommon for electric shock victims to suffer amputation, severe burns (external and internal), cardiac arrest, heart muscle damage and/or brain injuries.
Because the stakes are so high for electric shock victims, it is crucial that we all do everything in our power for electric shock prevention to protect ourselves, our families, our friends and our communities from the dangers of electric shock.
In this blog post, I will discuss my top 15 tips on how to prevent electric shock.
15 Electric Shock Prevention Tips
Below are the electric shock prevention safety strategies that top my list on how to prevent electric shock injuries:
- Parents and other adults must stay vigilant about identifying and eliminating electric shock dangers in the home such damaged electric appliances, wiring, cords and plugs.
- Electric appliances such as air dryers, radios, and cell phone chargers should never be used in the bathroom or anywhere else that they might accidentally come in contact with water.
- Teach young children about the dangers of electricity and that electric appliances should only be operated by their parents or an adult.
- In homes with infants and young children, all of the outlets should have electrical outlet covers and/or electrical outlet plug protectors.
- During thunderstorms, people should seek shelter by going indoors and boaters should get off the water as fast as possible. Everyone should refrain from using phones, computers and electrical appliances as they can be conduits for lightning.
- Do not use line cords that are frayed or cracked.
- Do not use damaged or frayed extension cords and never overload extension cords beyond its maximum amperage, i.e., the maximum amount of electrical current that it can conduct safely.
- Never use an electrical plug whose third prong (which is the grounding pin) has been removed.
- Use and regularly test your GFCI outlets and plugs. GFCI is short for “Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters.” GFCIs will prevent an electrical shock hazard by cutting off power when there has been a fault interruption in the electrical current.
- Always use a light bulb of the proper wattage in light fixtures.
- Be certain that your circuit breakers and fuses are the correct size and the correct current rating for their circuit.
- Don’t overload your electrical outlets or receptacles with too many plugs and power bars.
- When an electrical appliance is plugged in and is running, it is “under load” and it should not be unplugged. Doing so could cause an arc of electricity from the outlet to the plug.
- Stay away from power lines when trimming trees, cleaning gutters and/or repairing roofs.
- Never, ever, ever touch a downed power line.
What you need to know about electric shock prevention during Halloween
Follow these electric shock prevention tips to make the risk of electric shock injuries less frightful during Halloween:
- Never use electrical lights or decorations or extension cords outdoors that are marked “for indoor use.”
- If you’re going to use outdoor electrical decorations and lights and extension cords – where in late October there will likely be damp, wet, rainy and possibly even snowy conditions – then you must use Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCIs) to reduce your risk of electrical shock.
- Always inspect all electrical decorations and extension cords before use and discard any with cracked, frayed, or exposed wires.
- Use only electrical lights and decorations that have been approved and certified for safe use by a nationally recognized testing laboratory such as UL, Intertek (ETL), or CSA.
- Always turn off electrical decorations before leaving home or going to bed.
(Source: Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI))