Tue, 05 April 2016

Electrical safety is of concern in most environments in which we live and work because of the potential harm and even deaths it can cause if misused.  In maritime environments with the nearness to water and frequent presence of other hazardous materials, such as fuels and flammable chemicals, it is paramount that our employees and customers at sites such as marinas are not exposed to electrical hazards and are informed about those hazards so they can be alert for problems.

Electrical hazards can of course cause burns, shocks and electrocution (death).  Here are some specific rules for those working on docks, around vessels, and in marine facilities; these can be used by managers to guide a work environment training/discussion session.

Assume that all overhead wires are energized at lethal voltages. Never assume that a wire is safe to touch even if it is down or appears to be insulated.

Never touch a fallen overhead power line. Call the electric utility company to report fallen electrical lines.

Stay at least 10 feet (3 meters) away from overhead wires during cleanup and other activities. If working at heights or handling long objects, survey the area before starting work for the presence of overhead wires.

If an overhead wire falls across your vehicle while you are driving, stay inside the vehicle and continue to drive away from the line. If the engine stalls, do not leave your vehicle. Warn people not to touch the vehicle or the wire. Call or ask someone to call the local electric utility company and emergency services.

Never operate electrical equipment while you are standing in water.

Never repair electrical cords or equipment unless qualified and authorized.

Have a qualified electrician inspect electrical equipment that has gotten wet before energizing it.

If working in damp locations, inspect electric cords and equipment to ensure that they are in good condition and free of defects, and use a ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI).

Always use caution when working near electricity.


Working with electricity can be dangerous. Engineers, electricians, and other professionals work with electricity directly, including working on overhead lines, cable harnesses, and circuit assemblies. However, marine industry employees working around vessels, in shipyards, and on docks, even administrative employees such as office workers and sales people, work with electricity indirectly and may be exposed to electrical hazards; they should be made aware of the potential hazards if electrical sources are not handled properly.


For those organizations who would like to offer their staff members and customers relevant training in an on-line interactive mode SSA member MYMIC Global Limited has modules that cover the following off-the-shelf training in this area: 

Electrical Shock Drowning

Logout/Tagout Procedures for contractors

Safety considerations for use of Power Tools

General Electrical Hazards

For additional information or to schedule a consultation on this topic please contact MYMIC Global Managing Director, Dr. Tom Mastaglio,,  +1 353 87 791 1169/+1 353 66 946 0100.

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