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Electrical Safety 101: Dos and Don’ts of Power Strips in Hawaii

Photo courtesy of Tom Raftery on Flickr.

Photo courtesy of Tom Raftery on Flickr.

Power strips are the go-to electrical product for homes and businesses alike in Hawaii. They not only provide electricity for all of the appliances and devices we use on a daily basis, but they are safe too. Or so we think.
Believe it or not, you could be putting your home or business at risk by misusing power strips. Adhering to misconceptions on their purpose and use could be putting the people as well as the building around you in danger. By equipping yourself with the knowledge of how and when to use power strips, you’ll not only be following OSHA regulations but initiating best practices for those in your home and business in Hawaii.

Power Strip Tips

– First and foremost, power strips should only be used to power certain devices, like computers, audio and video equipment, and musical instruments. It should not be used to power appliances, like refrigerators, microwaves and space heaters.
– Remember that power strips should not be treated as a substitute for an electrical outlet. This will help in determining what should and should not be plugged into a power strip.
– Some businesses prohibit the use of power strips altogether. Be sure to ask your boss or office manager before plugging in a power strip to power approved devices.
– Power strips should only be plugged into an electrical outlet. It’s a huge safety hazard to plug power strips into one another creating a chain of strips (referred to commonly as “daisy chaining”) or extension cords until an electrical outlet is reached.
– When trying to find the correct power strip for your home or business in Hawaii, look for products that have an internal circuit breaker. These power strips will automatically shut off if they’re overloaded. On a similar note, if a power strip in use feels hot to the touch, unplug it, discard and purchase another.
– Avoid using power strips in places where they could get wet, like in the kitchen, garage or out on the patio. Obviously, electricity and water do not mix so avoid any dangerous scenarios altogether by keeping power strips out of these areas.
– Do not route power strips through walls, windows or doors. They are only to be used within close proximity of an electrical outlet and are not to act as a substitute for your home or business’ electricity.
– To save on energy costs, unplug power strips when not in use.
– Make sure that the power strips you purchased have been approved by a reputable testing laboratory, like Underwriters Laboratory (UL) or Electrical Testing Laboratories (ETL).

When used correctly in your home or business in Hawaii, power strips can provide a secure electrical connection to power your necessary devices. Implementing these tips and policies will not only keep your family or staff members safe but will also ensure that you’re following OSHA standards and regulations. Thanks to you, your home or business in Hawaii will be all the more safe.