As an electrician, you work with hazards on a daily basis. A crossed wire here or a loose connection there can put your businesses’ reputation and bottom line at risk.
In this article, we will lay out our top health and safety tips for electricians, drawing from authoritative industry regulators such as the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), as well as our own knowledge and experience.
Read on to learn how as an electrical contractor you can remain compliant by managing risks therefore avoiding fines and litigation, and safeguard the future of your business.
Performing a risk assessment is essential for those working as electricians. There are a number of hazards which come from working with electricity, both to your employees and members of the public who come into contact with your work.
A risk assessment is designed to identify and reduce potential hazards through safe systems of work.
The HSE outlines that an electrical contractor must identify potential hazards.
Your risk assessment should cover:
- Who could be harmed and how
- How risk levels have been determined
- The precautions taken to control that risk
Your risk assessment must also take into consideration the type of equipment used, the purpose that equipment is used for and the environment in which it is used.
At Hawksafe, we offer a huge variety of risk assessment templates as well as bespoke risk assessment packages which can be invaluable for businesses that have never produced one themselves.
Our risk assessment templates are easy to use even for those with no previous experience. Essential information is prewritten requiring minimal input from the user thus saving your organisation time and resources.
Ensuring your employees are competent
If your employees are not competent to perform the work they are assigned to do, the depth and rigour of your risk assessments will not prevent accidents and injuries, no matter how thorough they may seem.
The HSE defines a competent person as “Someone who has the suitable training, skill and knowledge for the task to be undertaken to prevent injury to themselves and others”.
When hiring electricians, you can do your due diligence by ensuring potential employees have completed their electrical apprenticeship and have some provable work experience to practically apply their training to.
Specialised work requires additional training and experience. For instance, it means maintenance of high-voltage switchgear and control system modification.
Carry out regular maintenance
Any work that you do or equipment that you use to facilitate electrical work must be maintained to reduce hazards.
For those that use electrical equipment, visual checks should be carried out prior to and after use. Should any faults be spotted, ensure that the equipment in question is repaired or replaced immediately, before resuming the task in hand.
When to stop using equipment:
- When the plug or connecting element is damaged
- Internal wires or a botched repair job are visible
- Burns marks are evident (can point to overheating)
As with undertaking electrical work, repairs should only be attempted by a competent person.
Let’s discuss your health and safety requirements
Get in touch with us today to discuss your health and safety requirements. From online and classroom training to upskill your employees, to competent health and safety advice, we act as an extension of your team, to ensure your organisation is complaint and meet all your health and safety requirements.
We can carry out health and safety audits to identify the hazards in the way you work, and suggest safe systems of work to protect your employees, clients and members of the public.
If you are looking to secure SSIP accreditations to prove your work’s safety and competence, our support service will guide you through a successful application.