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Electrical Grounding Systems: How to Keep Your Employees Safe


Electrical Grounding Systems: How to Keep Your Employees Safe

Electrical workers face many dangers in their daily work. The standards in the National Electrical Code (NEC) are designed to keep work sites safe for everyone. Grounding systems are an essential part of these safety guidelines.

But what are grounding systems? What training do your employees need to ensure their health and well-being on the job?

Defining Electrical Grounding Systems

In the world of electrical work, the term ground has three distinct meanings.

  1. The point in an electrical circuit used to measure voltage.
  2. The return path followed by an electrical current back to its original panel or source.
  3. A wire or rod that connects electrical systems to the earth.

When referring to grounding systems, the third definition applies. A grounding system protects electrical systems from the effects of faults and failures by channeling the excess current into the earth where it is safely dispersed. There are three types of grounding systems.

  1. Ungrounded systems are built without a neutral wire or device to conduct current safely away from its source. These systems were common in the 1940s and 1950s but aren’t used much in modern construction.
  2. Solid grounding systems contain a neutral wire that starts at the power source. The line usually terminates underground. This allows excess current to safely flow into the surrounding earth.
  3. High-resistance grounding systems are similar to solid systems. However, an additional device is used to limit the ground fault current. These systems are often used in low voltage systems.

Each system is used in different types of construction. Grounding systems protect properties and workers from the hazards of live, uncontrolled electrical currents in three main ways.

  1. Proper grounding creates a direct path to electrical devices for currents to travel.
  2. Grounding stabilizes voltage levels.
  3. Appliances and other devices are protected from damaging surges when grounding systems are used.

Do Your Employees Need Electrical Grounding System Training?

Grounding systems are a vital part of protecting costly business assets like computer systems and other powered equipment from the effects of electrical overload. If your maintenance staff is responsible for servicing and maintain your electrical systems, it’s important to make sure they are fully aware of the right way to secure those systems with grounding techniques. A formal training course will teach your employees how to safely work with these systems while following the National Fire Protection Association guidelines as laid out in Article 250 of the NEC.

  • How to install new grounding systems or update existing hardware.
  • Testing existing systems to ensure full compliance and protection.
  • Inspecting systems to prevent failures and limit the potential above-ground damage.
  • How to work with systems to reduce the chances of shock, fire, and explosion.

Without properly trained staff, an electrical failure in a commercial setting can be catastrophic in many ways. Besides the loss of property and productivity due to damaged equipment, employees can be severely injured. Hiring outside contractors to maintain or repair systems can take a large chunk out of your operating budget and endanger overall profits.

The NEC updates their guidelines regularly, so it’s important for electrical workers and others who work with commercial electrical systems to stay up-to-date. When your employees attend a training course, they receive the latest information. This ensures they are ready to keep your assets running smoothly. It also saves you money, since you won’t have to pay overpriced contractors for these services.

Where Can I Find Training for My Employees?

The Grounding and Bonding of Electrical Systems seminar at NTT Training will prepare your maintenance staff, supervisors, and managers to work with grounding systems. Send your employees to our campus or contact our representatives to schedule a specialized training at your site. In this 2-day, instructor-led course, all of the study materials and hands-on tools are provided by NTT. All you need to provide is space, time, and a whiteboard or projection screen.

Don’t take a chance with your important business assets. Contact us now to schedule your sessions.

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