What are the generator safety tips to keep your workers safe?
Place your generator in a well-ventilated area
Install CO alarms in buildings
Keep the genset dry to prevent electrocution
Keep flammable materials away
Use heavy-duty cords
Protect your workers with PPE
Maintain your generators regularly
Having a generator set in the Philippines is indispensable, especially for companies that require portable electrical power—such as construction sites. It is also vital in industries that need backup electricity to continue operations like healthcare facilities. But just like any piece of machinery, it requires proper operation to keep your workers safe. Here are seven generator safety tips you can follow. Read on!
Place Your Generator in A Well Ventilated Area
Because this device is powered by fuel, the by-product is a deadly, colorless, and odorless gas called carbon monoxide. In an enclosed space, these particles can build up and poison any individuals nearby.
When running your generator, place it in an area at least 20 feet from the main building. Direct the exhaust fumes away from your working area so your workers won’t inhale the gases. Be alert for symptoms of CO poisoning and know the next steps you can take in this situation.
Install CO Alarms in Buildings
In line with preventing carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning, you should also consider installing CO alarms in each building. These detectors will notify you if the amount of CO exceeds a certain limit—even before you notice symptoms such as headaches, nausea, and vomiting.
When installing alarms, place them on each level of the building near garage doors and sleeping areas. This way, you can take the necessary steps to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning even during the wee hours of the night.
Keep the Genset Dry to Prevent Electrocution
Even though the generators are kept outside when in use, that doesn’t mean that you can let them get wet. Because it produces strong electrical power, touching it in this condition can lead to serious shock and electrocution.
When using your genset outdoors, place it under a canopy-like structure with ample space on all sides. Move it away from wet surroundings such as a pool or a sprinkling system. To prevent endangering your workers, reschedule tasks when it becomes rainy.
Keep Flammable Materials Away
Because it requires fuel to run, a generator is also a fire hazard. The casing is made of metal—which is a good conductor of heat—so you can expect it to remain hot even after being turned off. This is the reason why you have to refuel them after cooling down, as the high temperature can ignite fuels and cause a fire.
A common mistake some workers do is storing the gasoline canister near the genset while waiting for it to cool down. If it touches the muffler, it can instantly melt the plastic and cause the liquid to pool around the generator. When storing fuel containers, make sure to keep them away from heat-generating devices. Prohibit smoking near these areas for all individuals.
Use Heavy-Duty Cords
If you don’t have a transfer switch yet, you can power your equipment by using extension cords. But the important thing is to choose thick variants that can handle the electrical load you will be needing it for. If not, the wires will run hot and melt—possibly leading to a fire.
When choosing a cord, look for a product that is properly rated for outdoor use. Inspect them before and after every use as damaged wires can leave people and equipment vulnerable to electric fires.
Protect Your Workers with PPE
Depending on your other tasks on your site, your workers might already be required to wear personal protective wear. This can protect them from hazards such as extreme noise levels that are associated with power tools—such as a generator. Diesel sets commonly emit a sound that reaches 75-85 decibels, which is higher than the recommended level.
To prevent hearing problems, it is helpful to require ear protection wear when on site. Placing a generator set away from workers can also hit two birds with one stone— reducing the risk of CO poisoning and lessening the noise.
Maintain Your Generators Regularly
To keep your generators in their best condition, you need to maintain them regularly. With the proper care, your equipment can last for a long time without repairs. To start, you should consider investing in an enclosure to protect your genset from moisture. If you don’t use it often, remember to power it up every 3 months to charge the electrical starter.
Other than that, monthly and semiannual inspections can also make a tremendous difference. This way, your coolant, accessory drive belts, engine oil, filters, and other generator parts can be replaced.
To enjoy the powerful capabilities of this reliable equipment safely, these generator safety tips can help you! With proper usage and maintenance, you can benefit from portable electricity in times of disasters—which is a life-or-death situation for healthcare facilities. Companies that require remote power will also experience convenient operations.
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