California job sites are filled with hazards – too many to list. Each poses a danger for employees. One of the biggest risks occurs when electricity comes into play.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) cautions that any tasks on the job site that have to do with electricity should be performed only by workers who have been completely trained and are thus “qualified.”
So what makes a person qualified?
According to OSHA, a qualified person has been trained and has shown they are knowledgeable and skilled in operating electrical equipment. It is possible for someone to be qualified on certain equipment but not on another.
A qualified employee has a number of skills, including recognizing electrical hazards and knowing how to avoid them, understanding the use of protective equipment and interpreting a facility’s electrical safety plan.
The National Fire Protection had this to say:
“Although contractors may state that their personnel are qualified to work on electrical systems, they may not be qualified from OSHA’s standpoint. Simply being an electrician is not enough. The person must receive the proper training, ideally from a professional instructor.”
Unqualified workers lack experience in identifying and working with and around potential electrical hazards. In fact, if they are set to work on a task they aren’t qualified to do, that can create unnecessary dangers in the workplace.
Employees in any field have a right to go their workplaces every day and know they will be safe. That’s especially a concern in the construction, manufacturing and industrial trades, and it’s heightened when electrical work comes into play. Employers should take no chances with the safety of their employees and make sure anyone handling electricity is qualified.
If you have suffered an injury because of electrical issues at work, a lawyer experienced in such cases could help you to recoup your losses.