ANDALUSIA, ALA.– Electricity is an increasing presence in our modern lives. As our reliance on electricity grows, so does the potential for electrical safety hazards.
PowerSouth encourages all employees to be safe during May, as the Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) sponsors National Electrical Safety Month each May to increase public awareness of the electrical hazards around us at home, work, school and play.
Stay safe at the workplace
While home is where the heart is, many of us spend more of our waking hours at work. If work isn’t done safely, it can put a lot of wear and tear on your body.
Cooking up safety in the kitchen
The kitchen is the heart of the home. It’s where families gather to cook favorite recipes, share warm meals, and reconnect with each other, but it’s also the location where two-thirds of all home fires start. Identify and correct potential hazards in your kitchen before someone gets hurt.
• Keep your stove and oven clean. Clean the exhaust hood and duct over the stove regularly.
• Keep the cooking area around the stove/oven clear of combustibles, such as towels, napkins and pot holders.
• Plug counter top appliances into GFCI-protected outlets.
• Locate all appliances away from the sink.
• Keep appliance cords away from hot surfaces like the range or toaster.
• Unplug the toaster and other counter top appliances when not in use.
• Make sure there is room behind the refrigerator for air to circulate.
• Do not use electrical appliances that have been wet. Water can damage the motors in electrical appliances like freezers and refrigerators.
Plug into safety in your family room
The family room is an area of the home where many people go to unwind and relax, but there are certainly a lot of appliances powered there. Many homes and their electrical systems were built before most modern-day home electronics and appliances were even invented. Learn to recognize and eliminate potential electrical hazards that can exist in common areas of your home.
• Make sure entertainment centers and computer equipment have plenty of space around them for ventilation.
• Extension cords are for temporary use only and are not intended to be used as a permanent power supply.
• Do not place extension cords in high traffic areas, under carpets, or across walkways, where they pose a potential tripping hazard.
• Examine extension cords before each use. Replace cracked or damaged cords immediately.
• Use a surge protector to protect your computer and other electronic equipment from damage caused by voltage changes.
• Consider purchasing surge protectors with cable and phone jacks to provide similar protection to your phone, computer modem and television.
• Keep liquids, including drinks, away from electrical items such as televisions and computers.
Wake up to safety in the bedroom
The average adult sleeps almost 8 hours per night, spending at least one-third of every day in their bedroom. Unfortunately, we are often at our most vulnerable while asleep. Thirty-six percent of people killed in home fires never wake up. Take steps to make sure your bedroom is safe — you’ll sleep better!
• Before installing a portable air conditioner, make sure that the electrical circuit and the outlet are able to handle the load.
• Large window A/C units should have their own separate electrical circuit so the system is not overloaded.
• Air conditioners need to be cleaned at the beginning of every season to keep them running safely and efficiently.
• Check ceiling fans regularly for a wobble, which will wear out the motor over time. To fix the wobble, turn off power to the ceiling fan and tighten the screws.
• Replace any lamp whose cord is damaged or cracked.
• Use correct bulb wattage in fixtures. Light bulbs with wattages that are too high for the light fixture can overheat the fixture and start a fire.
• Always turn lamps off when you leave the room for an extended period of time.
• Unplug battery chargers or power adapters when equipment is fully charged or is disconnected from the charger.
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PowerSouth serves the wholesale energy needs of 16 electric cooperatives and four municipal electric systems in Alabama and northwest Florida, with more than a million consumers in 39 Alabama and 10 Florida counties. PowerSouth is dedicated to providing reliable energy at the lowest possible cost to its members.
PowerSouth is an EEO and AAP employer
2027 East Three Notch Street | Andalusia, AL 36421 | PO Box 550 | Andalusia, AL 36420 | (334) 427-3000 | firstname.lastname@example.org