Preventing Electrical Shocks
There’s No Such Thing as a Safe Shock — Here’s How You Can Prevent One
Most Ontarians say they’ve received a shock. And although you might brush off a little zap from a toaster, even low-voltage shocks can have serious long-term after effects. These include memory loss, anxiety and pins and needles.
If you or someone you know receives a shock, seek medical attention.
Ever wondered what happens to your body when you receive a shock? Watch this quick video to find out!
Kids are especially curious and are natural explorers who get their hands on everything. This puts them at risk for shock. On average, more than 110 kids under 15 end up in the emergency department each year in Ontario due to an electrical injury. More than half are under the age of five.
- If your outlet has a missing or broken cover plate, replace it immediately. Outlet covers create a barrier between people and exposed wires;
- Install tamper-resistant receptacles to protect younger children from shocks. They have special shutters that cover the plug slots and help prevent little fingers or objects from going into the outlet;
- Small kids often want to explore new things by putting them in their mouths. Keep cords away from little hands and mouths;
- Teach older children how to plug and unplug safely. Never overload outlets by plugging in too many cords. Use an approved power bar that has surge protection instead. When it’s time to unplug, don’t yank cords from the wall. This can damage the appliance, the cord and the outlet;
- Check all your cords. Replace frayed cords; tape won’t protect anyone from a shock. Only use extension cords temporarily. They are prone to cracking and fraying, which can lead to a shock or fire;
- Water and electricity can be a lethal mix. Install Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCIs), which have a reset button, in any room with water. This includes bathrooms, kitchens and laundry rooms. GFCIs help protect from a shock; and
- If you need electrical work done in your home, only hire a Licensed Electrical Contractor .
Learn more about the effects of electrical shock and how you can create a safe home for you and your kids.