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A question


Jaykline
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I'm wondering how many of you wear rubber insulating gloves when opening up an electrical panel?

Maybe a better way to pose the question would be: What kinds of personal protection equipment do you use when inspecting electrical panels? (gloves?, rubber mat? arc flash face shield, insulated screwdrivers? nothing?)

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I'll add an insulated screwdriver to Bruce's shoes and glasses. But this is stuff I use for everything, so I am not taking special precautions. I do take a good look at the panel before removing the cover to be sure there are no obvious problems.

Years ago, I put a pointed screw into a hot wire replacing the cover. That was exciting. Sparks flew and the breaker tripped. I recommended an electrician make repairs and was never asked to pay anything.

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I have rubber soles on my shoes, my screwdrivers are insulated and have my glasses to protect my eyes. Sometimes, I'll still be wearing my nitrile gloves when I get to the panel, but often not. I've had one throw an arc and pop a breaker due to a sharp screw that had cut into a wire and I've had breakers fall out on me.

Funny story. I used to be so frightened of inspecting these damned things that I would stand back as far as I physically could and lean way inward to the panels to remove them. My reasoning was that if I got hit by the panel, my body's dead weight would continue to carry me to the floor and pull my hand off the panel if I got zapped. Funny term that - "dead" weight.

After a while, I got over my nervousness.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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Originally posted by Jaykline

I'm wondering how many of you wear rubber insulating gloves when opening up an electrical panel?

Maybe a better way to pose the question would be: What kinds of personal protection equipment do you use when inspecting electrical panels? (gloves?, rubber mat? arc flash face shield, insulated screwdrivers? nothing?)

The single most important thing you should be doing is wearing safety glasses. An arc can occur without warning and your eyes are easily the most vulnerable part of your body in that regard.

Plain latex or nitrile gloves are too thin to provide much insulating protection from the power in an electrical panel. True insulating gloves would be too bulky to be practical. Besides, you shouldn't be touching stuff in there anyway.

Wear glasses. Don't touch.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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