1.3: Electronic Office Equipment Safety
ctricity is essential to the operations of a modern automated office as a source of power. Electrical equipment used in an office is potentially hazardous and can cause serious shock and burn injuries if improperly used or maintained.
Nature of the Hazard
- Electricity travels through electrical conductors, which may be in the form of wires or parts of the human body.
- Most metals and moist skin offer very little resistance to the flow of electrical current and can easily conduct electricity.
- Other substances such as dry wood, porcelain, or pottery offer a high resistance and can be used to prevent the flow of electrical current.
- If a part of the body comes in contact with the electrical circuit, a shock will occur.
- The electrical current will enter the body at one point and leave at another. The passage of electricity through the body can cause great pain, burns, destruction of tissue, nerves, and muscles and even death.
- Factors influencing the effects of electrical shock include the type of current, voltage, resistance, amperage, pathway through body, and the duration of contact. The longer the current flows through the body, the more serious the injury.
- Injuries are less severe when the current does not pass through or near nerve centres and vital organs.
- Electrical accidents usually occur as a result of faulty or defective equipment, unsafe installation, or misuse of equipment on the part of office workers.