Fire hazards can be hiding in plain sight

Just this week, Gene Graham, one of our expert test & tag technicians found two life threatening appliances in an office space. Whilst visiting a business and carrying out routine electrical testing services, he spotted two space heaters that were dangerously close to combustion.

The reason these heaters were dangerous was because not a manufacturer fault or prolonged use – they had simply been used in the wrong way.

So, why are space heaters a fire hazard?
Many people don’t know this, but portable electric heaters cannot be used with extension leads and power boards – they need to be plugged directly into the wall outlet.

Fire Hazard

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Caption: Damaged outlet and extension cord discovered by Gene Graham, on the job.

Space heaters can become an electrical hazard through misuse.

By plugging your heater into a power board or extension cord, you can overwhelm the circuit with electrical current and start a fire. Most extension cords and power boards aren’t built to withstand the amount of electrical current a small heater can generate. The consistent high level of current that is required to run a heater can cause the wires in cords and power points to overheat and start a fire.

For this reason, you should never leave a heater running in your office unattended, or on overnight when at home. No matter the nature of your heater, its always safer to monitor electrical appliances.

As an electrical testing company, we’ve encountered too many instances where appliances are being used incorrectly. Clients who ask us to do routine checks in their building quickly find that there are unexpected hazards hiding in power outlets.

If you’re worried about any of the equipment in your office, you can ask one of our technicians to visit your workplace and complete testing and tagging services. While we’re there, we can check your fire extinguishers, hose reels, and blankets to make sure your staff have protection during a fire.

Can I use an extension cord with my electric blanket?

This is another frequently asked question our team encounter. You have a couple of choices here – the safest option is to plug your electric blanket into the wall. The second option is to check if your extension cord can handle the wattage specified by your specific electric blanket. Just make sure the amps on the extension cord are higher than that of the electric blanket. If you’re having trouble checking the amps, just plug your blanket into the wall instead.

What is electrical testing?

Electrical testing and tagging will help reduce risk in your workplace. Our technicians perform safety checks on any item that plugs in. If it has a power plug, we need to test it. You can reduce the risk of electrical shock and fire in your workplace by asking us to perform routine maintenance.

Let us visit your place of business and check for hazards. Your safety is our business.

You can ensure space heater safety in the workplace by always plugging your heater into the wall and having it regularly tested for electrical faults.

Now that you know why space heaters are a fire hazard, you can keep your workplace safe. For more tips on how to prevent harm in your office, check out the rest of our website and get in touch to request our services.

We’re keeping Australian workplaces safe with our work. Do your part and have your workplace inspected today.