How should electrical panels or conduits be marked?

Electrical panels and conduits in many facilities have massive amounts of electricity flowing through them. These are typically the places where the main sources of electricity comes into the building, and where all equipment in the facility needs to be connected in order to access it. This makes these areas among the most dangerous when it comes to electrical hazards. To keep a facility safe from electrical hazards, it is necessary to properly mark the panels and the areas around them to minimize any risks.

Requirements from OSHA

When it comes to workplace safety, the first thing to look at is what the OSHA requirements are. OSHA has requirements not only regarding what must be displayed on the electrical panels, but also what can be placed around them. To start with, you need to have a label on the outside of the box indicating that it is a high voltage area to warn people not to open it unless they are qualified. In most cases, you also need to ensure nothing is placed anywhere within 3 feet of the box. This is often done using floor marking tape or floor signs to help ensure nobody places any items in that area.

Further Markings are Important

Going beyond the minimums that are required by OSHA is usually a good idea. Many facilities will print off a custom label that identifies exactly how much voltage is going through the panel or conduit. Another helpful piece of information is listing who should be contacted if any work needs to be performed. This will typically be the electrician or other maintenance department professional who is qualified to work in this area.

Putting Safety First

Whenever planning any type of labeling or marking for electrical equipment, the first thing you need to think about is safety. Placing the labels in a place where there is no risk that it could catch on fire due to exposure to electricity is very important. This usually means placing it directly on the door to the electrical panel.

 

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Additional Resources

Wire Marking Guide
 
Electrical Panel Labeling Guide
 
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