Electrical Accidents in 1935

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    Abstract

    THE report on electrical accidents in 1935 by H.M. electrical inspector of factories (London: H.M. Stationery Office. 9d.) is of special value to all who design and operate electrical apparatus. The total number of accidents reported under the Acts was 447, of which 23 were fatal. Although the use of electricity has doubled during the last ten years, the annual total of the number of accidents has varied very little. The total number, twenty-three, of fatal accidents on factory premises is eight less than last year. This is probably due to the much larger use now made of artificial respiration when attempting to revive the victims of electric shock. In successful cases the time of application necessary varied from a few minutes to half an hour. Last year there were nine successful cases, but if it had been tried in every case there would doubtless have been more, as signs of life in some of the cases which ended fatally were evident after the shock. The inspectors specially mention the very rapid growth of electric arc welding to structures of all kinds. Although there were thirty-six electrical accidents to electrical welders, none of them was fatal. This is probably largely due to the attention now being paid to the personal equipment of the operator. Gauntlets, hand screens and helmets are made of suitable insulating materials, and are standardized. In addition, the harmful effects produced on the eyes of workmen not concerned in the welding processes, but liable to flashes from an arc in their vicinity, are considered. It has been found that plain glasses cut off a large proportion of the harmful ultra-violet rays. Until they had experienced the painful effects of eye flash, workmen were reluctant to wear them; in works where they are used, eye trouble has been eliminated.

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