When rainwater or flood runs into your basement or home, do not rush there to get started on the cleanup; it may not be safe, and you must take some safety measures before getting into the cleaning process. Here are 4 electrical safety rules that you must know to stay safe and prevent water damage to electrical wiring.
● Never get into a flood-damaged basement
The first thing you must ensure is that your basement is not damaged as well as not filled with water; once you ensure this and everything is clear, just remove the home’s electrical meter from its socket and turn off the electricity. To completely disconnect your home from the grid, removing the socket can be the only option because water damages electrical wiring. It does not matter you have the electric supply or not; it is not advisable to get into the basement without removing the power socket; because even when you lost power, there is a chance of getting be electrocuted in a flooded basement when someone is running a generator and back-feeding electricity into a storm-damaged grid. So, make sure that you have disconnected the electrical meter from the socket; if you do not know how to do so, you can seek the help of a licensed electrician or fire department. After the flood, wait for everything to dry up and get settled.
● Keep in mind that all flooded electrical equipment is almost ruined
Only very few things in a house can survive submersion; here is the list of few things that you may need to replace.
➢ Fuse boxes and fuses
➢ Armoured cable
➢ Plastic sheathed building wire
➢ Circuit panels and breakers
➢ Blowers and fans
➢ Circuit board
➢ Air conditioner
➢ Heaters and lights
These are only a list of few items that you may need to replace, and you may need to replace more things as well, or some of the listed equipment might have survived the flood; it all depends. It is better to call a licensed electrician and let them check the Wiring Electrical Appliances.
● Pay extra attention to grounding and bonding
In every home’s electrical system, there will be two aspects; the parts designed to carry electrical current during normal operation and the parts designed to carry current safely to the ground should something go wrong. The latter is known as the home’s grounding and bonding device, and it is highly susceptible to floodwater and can be a cause of getting an electrical shock by your mistake. All metal components of an electrical system should be carefully checked and replaced if necessary. For instance, metal electrical boxes that have been submerged may get rust, and the rust on the box prevents an adequate connection to the home’s grounding system.
● Never get into the flooded building alone
Even if your building is completely cut off from the grid, do not enter the submerged structure alone; put on chest waders, carry a bright torchlight, and most importantly, have someone on your side, in case you need help. Basements that have been flooded would be dark, disorienting, and slippery, making it possible to get hurt or drown. And it would be better if you have a torchlight as one of the important electrical appliances that can clip on your chest waders or hats so that you do not need to carry it. Remember, it is always better to have someone on your side.
The above mentioned 4 rules for electrical safety should never be ignored during rain and flood.