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Check electric wiring in homes, Eskom urges

File picture: Bhekikhaya Mabaso

File picture: Bhekikhaya Mabaso

Published Oct 2, 2016

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Johannesburg – Eskom has urged householders to ensure that the electric wiring in their homes is up to scratch and safe.

“One of Eskom’s biggest priorities is to educate the public about the dangers associated with the unsafe use of electricity,” the parastatal said in a statement on Sunday.

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“By always shining the spotlight on these incidents and warning the public we aim to reduce the number of injuries and deaths in support of our ‘zero harm’ policy. Every year, innocent lives are lost and people are seriously injured as a consequence of the unsafe use of electricity. Substandard wiring is one of the biggest contributors to these electricity-related incidents,” it said.

Substandard wiring meant wiring of poor quality – making it unsafe for people and animals around it, especially if it was within reach. In many cases the insulation – the material that prevented people from making contact with the electricity – was either not done at all or done poorly using incorrect materials such as masking tape, which did not insulate properly and became brittle quickly. If a person or animal touched any exposed electrical wiring or cabling they could suffer a serious or even fatal injury, Eskom said.

Substandard insulation could also cause wires running along metal roofs to make the entire roof, or the wires holding the roof, or even the entire structure of the house, to become live and hence posed a threat of injury or death to anyone who made contact with the live structure.

Electrical wires could also become highly dangerous when they were run through doors and windows. The wires or cables would get damaged and expose anyone who touched the window or door to an electrical shock which could kill them. It was also important that all three wires – live, neutral, and earth – should be used at all times.

“Eskom would like to remind all South Africans that although electricity is an essential part of life it can be dangerous if not used correctly. It is always advisable to get a qualified electrician to do any electrical connections or repairs. Only authorised Eskom employees and contractors are permitted to work on all Eskom structures,” it said.

African News Agency (ANA)

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