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(TNS)—I would like to share some tips with you on electrical safety courtesy of PSE&G. (Remember, these apply to life year-round.)

  • Never handle electric appliances with wet hands, or use them in damp conditions unless they are rated for such use.
  • Secure electric sockets around toddlers and babies. All outlets within reach should be protected with plastic closures that fit snugly and cannot be removed easily.
  • Eliminate defective or worn electric wires. Cords should not be loose or frayed, and should have a grounding prong intact if so equipped.
  • Never pour water on an electrical fire. You must use a fire extinguisher that is rated Class C for use on them.
  • Leave wiring to the pros. Employ the services of a licensed professional who can do the job safely and correctly.
  • Watch for overheating bulbs and lights. Never exceed the maximum wattage specified. Consider replacing bulbs with lower-wattage bulbs.
  • When doing work on electrical equipment, ensure that all sources of power to the appliance are turned off.
  • When working on or near outlets or overhead lights, or cutting into drywall, be sure to shut off the correct circuit breaker. A simple voltage tester can be purchased for home use at a local electrical-supply store.
  • Don’t misuse extension cords, and never use them as permanent substitutes for additional outlets.
  • Never cover cords and wires. They radiate heat, and a fire could result.
  • Protect electric outlets close to sources of water. Those in bathrooms, kitchens, laundry rooms, and garages should be ground-fault circuit-interrupter outlets to reduce the chance of electric shock. GFCI outlets are required around pools and spas.
  • Keep ladders at least 10 feet from power lines.
  • Never touch a downed power line or go near one. Call your utility to report it at once.

©2016 The Philadelphia Inquirer
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