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The content following is in the process of being transitioned from WorkCover to SafeWork SA.

The hazards

Illustrates a power point and plug surrounded by waterOf all common utilities, electricity has the greatest potential and ability to seriously injure and kill. Electricity is invisible - this in itself makes it dangerous.

Electric shock occurs when a person becomes part of an electrical circuit and the current flows through their body. A fatal shock is called electrocution.

The danger of injury through electrical shock is present whenever electrical power is used. The average person can receive critical injuries as a result of even very short exposures to everyday 240 volt single-phase alternating current supply voltages. Under certain conditions people can be injured severely even from relatively low voltages coupled with high current flows.

Most accidents involving electricity result from:

  • not isolating the electrical supply
  • working on live electrical equipment
  • inadequate maintenance.

Most could have been avoided by a combination of factors such as:

  • training
  • supervision
  • safe work practices
  • maintaining electrical installations.

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