Electricians work directly with various levels of electrical voltage! Wearing the right staff is essential.
Electricians shouldn’t wear any metallic accessories like rings, watches, or jewelry. You may ask, why don’t they isolate power instead of removing these metallic precious accessories? well, they do! but not all the time.
In many cases, electricians work on live parts to troubleshoot the circuit. I have written a detailed article about Why electricians work on live parts. You can check it out for more information.
Let’s see what electricians should and shouldn’t wear.
Can electricians wear accessories?
It depends on the material used in the accessory. Most of the time accessories are made with such materials that are conductive.
If there is some conductive material in an accessory and it is exposed then this accessory must not be worn by the electricians.
Let’s look for some accessories that electricians should use or not while dealing with energized circuits:
Wedding rings made from conductive materials like gold, copper, and zinc tungsten should not be worn by electricians.
It’s very dangerous to wear them while doing work on energized electrical circuits. Metal rings that are 100% non-conductive are almost impossible to find.
Silicon and wooden wedding may be the creative alternative for this. Silicon is not only non-conductive but also has properties of heat resistant, non-allergenic, and capable enough to endure hard circumstances in which usually electricians do work.
Silicon rings are made from silicon rubber and their durability is quite impressive. They are comfortable and relatively inexpensive.
Glass fiber ring is also a good alternative to gold or copper rings. You can show a firm commitment to your spouse by wearing a silicon ring as a replacement for a metal ring.
If you are working as an electrician and wearing a conductive material wedding ring then it should be removed before doing electric work.
I know this is hard but safety comes first. You should find these alternative rings mentioned above for your engagement so that you do need not to remove them while doing electrical work.
There is also the possibility that you forget where you kept your ring before the electrical activity, so avoid wearing the rings during work but if necessary then use silicon or wooden rings.
Electricians should not wear jewelry while working because it may lead them to face electric shock. Damage from the shock can be moderate to severe.
Wearing metal jewelry during work on high-voltage electrical lines is always a bad idea. Metal being a very good conductor conducts electricity and if you are wearing metal jewelry then it can fatal for you.
If you do not want to remove the jewelry even for some time as it is very close to your heart then jewelry having nonconductive materials should be used. I know it’s hard to find but still, there are many options that can be availed like the silicon or wooden rings mentioned above.
Sometimes you have to wear a bracelet for some medical essential reasons. For example, if you are a diabetic patient and wearing a medical alert bracelet then obviously you will not remove it as it’s essential for your health.
There should be some alternative for this as it is necessary for you to wear it. Some companies provide alert bracelets as an alternative that are not made of conductive material.
These are waterproof and sturdy and can be used by electricians while doing work on energized electrical circuits.
Earrings should not be worn by electricians as there can be many drastic implications of them. Earrings can be of the same conductive material, so after wearing these you are at high risk of getting electrocution.
Also, earrings is a such a thing that can fall down at any instance and can stuck in the helmet or in the electrical equipment. It’s recommended for electricians to not wear earrings during the electric work.
Silicon earrings are the alternative of it. As silicon is flexible and lightweight rubber and this makes it a pretty cool alternative to metal earrings.
Silicon earrings are well-crafted ones. Silicon earrings are also long-lasting than metal earrings. These are not only safe to use but also very soft and comfortable to wear.
Electricians can wear watches but they should also avoid wearing metal watches during electric work.
Electricians have to make sure that the watch surface is non-conductive in case they really want to wear it. The surface of the watch should also be smooth so that it does not stick to anything.
Sometimes a watch is essential to wear for seeing the time in case you forget the mobile at home. Sometimes a phone is not allowed on the site.
On some complaints, you have to take care of the time aspect, so for this, you should have a watch.
If you remove them before work, there is a possibility that you forget to pick them up after doing electrical work.
Silicon watches are also available as an alternative to metal watches. There are various designs have been offered at different prices for many years.
Silicon watches fulfill the need of those electricians who do not want to remove them. The size of the watch can also be a matter of concern as it may create interference during the electric work. So, when purchasing a watch, the size factor should also be given importance.
Why should electricians wear rubber gloves?
Electricians should wear rubber gloves during electrical work to avoid shock. Rubber does not allow the flow of current through it.
The human body is a good conductor while Rubber is a bad conductor and a pretty good natural insulator, so if the body accidentally comes in contact with a wire having current then no current will pass through the body and the electrician will not get the electric shock because of these protective rubber gloves.
But make sure you have rubber gloves of high quality and there should be no tears or holes in the gloves.
Also, different thickness rubber gloves are required for different wattage of the electricity, so make sure you have the required thickness rubber gloves for the task.
Rubber is a good insulator because it does not have the free electrons that are also known as conductive electrons.
Material having none or very few conductive electrons are good insulators and they does not allow the flow of the current.
Why do electricians wear protective boots?
Electricians wear protective boots to stop the flow of electricity through the body. Electricity needs an entry and exit point, so by wearing you are not providing it the exit point.
Electricity needs a complete path to flow continuously. These boots prevent the flow of current through your body to the ground.
Steel toe boots can be used by electricians but metal should not be exposed. Metal should not be exposed to the outside environment and to the wearer’s foot side.
So, before purchasing the boots just make sure that their design risks exposure to metal or not.
This metal exposure can be a risk factor but it’s all dependent on the manufacturer, so use high-quality branded shoes to avoid inconvenience.
As far as material is concerned that what type of Protective boots should be used then the answer is rubber protective shoes are a very good safe option because of their high insulation capability.
Safety footwear having rubber soles reduces the chances of getting an electric shock. Protective rubber gloves should also be used along with protective rubber boots.
These precautions though not protected 100% of the time from electric hazard are quite effective as these protections reduces the chances of injury.
Should electricians wear safety glasses?
Yes, electricians should wear safety glasses. Below are some of the reasons why electricians should wear it while doing electricity work:
- UV light & bright light produced by the electric arcs can be pretty harmful to the eyes. Safety glasses especially dielectric safety glasses protect your eyes from corneal flash burns that are caused by electric arcs. Safety glasses having specially tinted lenses should be used while working on live wires.
- Sometimes even if the electrical equipment itself is not supposed to explode, there can be other surrounding stuff that can lead to the undesired explosion. As a result, some flying shrapnel can come from the electrical equipment on which you are working, if you have safety glasses then your eyes will be protected. In the absence of safety glasses in this unprecedented situation, not you’re your eyesight at risk but also this shrapnel can enter your brain from your eye socket and can actually kill you.
- Electricians who wear eyeglasses for better vision must use safety glasses because there can be metal parts on the eyeglasses than can conduct electricity. As per the safety standards, these simple eyeglasses are usually considered Conductive apparel, so avoid wearing them while doing electrical work.
For more information about, Electrical PPE, read this article.
When should electricians wear full protection suits?
Electricians should wear full protection suits where their full body is exposed to external drastic conditions.
Electricians have to work under all circumstances, especially when they are working on construction sites, they must wear their full protection suits to avoid any sort of injury that can come from any possible way.
When electricians work in a domestic environment, they usually don’t require full protection suits. But, for industrial work and activities on the construction sites, it must be ensured that electricians wear full protection suits.
For protection suits, there should not be synthetic fiber, because, in case of an incident, it could melt down onto your skin.
So, the material of the suit should be customized as per the requirement. There should not be holes and tears in the full protection suit and must be checked when going to a site where this is necessary.
When should electricians wear a full face mask?
Electricians should wear full face protection when their face is exposed to hit explosive materials.
If you are working as an electrician on a construction site, any flying object from any direction can travel towards you, so you should wear head protection and a full face mask so that your head and face can be saved from any unwanted accident.
Electricians who work on high voltage connections must also wear full face shields as there can be a sudden release of energy due to the electric arc.
Molten metal and arching energy can be very harmful to the face and face shields protect you from these. Arc flash shields can also be tinted for better protection.
Yes, there can be problems with clear vision, for this, some face shields have an anti-fog coating. It must be ensured that full face coverings must be used on dangerous sites and also when working on high-voltage connections.
Can electricians wear shorts?
Yes, electricians can wear shorts while doing electric work. But again it all depends on where you are working. If you are working in residential areas, it’s OK to wear shots.
But, if you are working in industrial areas, it’s recommended you go with the full protection suit. In this way, you are reducing the chances of any sort of injury.
The severity of the site is a big factor that decides what you should wear and what you should not wear. If there are chances that some unwanted object can hit your legs, then you must wear pants rather than shorts.
As a matter of precaution, it is recommended to always go with the extra careful mindset if you are an electrician and deal with high voltages. So before wearing or not wearing the decision, a risk assessment should be done by the electrician.
Can electricians wear polyester shirts?
Electricians cannot wear polyester shirts while doing electrical work duties. Synthetic fibers like nylon or polyester are not allowed for electricians.
In case of unprecedented explosions, nylon and polyester material may melt and adhere to the skin. Secondary burns can be the result of this adherence.
Natural fiber like cotton is allowed for electricians. The benefit of cotton clothing is that it does not ignite as fast as some other materials ignite. So, while working on energized circuits cotton clothing is a much safe option than polyester. Flame-resistant cotton shirts serve best for this purpose.
Hard chemicals are used in making process of polyester and it can be dangerous to sensitive skin. These hard chemicals may also cause rashes on the skin.
you work With Electricity! Don’t leave empty-handed!
Looking to stay ahead of the game in the world of electrical engineering? Subscribe to my YouTube channel and gain access to exclusive content you won’t find anywhere else!