Theatrical Lighting Design Safety
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Electrical Safety

Electricity and Power page 5 of 6

Electrical Safety

This segment will cover the basics of dealing with electrical safety.

Electricians prefer to use wood ladders, because they help resist electricity.

Wood ladders - or aluminum ladders with "rubber feet".

Wood ladder
allumimum ladder with rubber feet

Use Insulated tools.

Tools can be insulated, or rubber-coated on the handle, to also help resist electricity.
Rubber-coates handles are more combfortable to use, too!
Adjustable end wrench - 8" Crescet
8" open-end adjustable wrench
Insulated Adjustable end wrench - 8" Crescet
Insulated 8" open-end adjustable wrench

Turn off and unplug the power supply when working on an instrument or other component.

Whenever working on a lighting instrument or other component, be sure it’s unplugged and the power is off.
Turn off the power supply

unplug by plug
Unplug by pulling the connector; not the cord!
don't pull by the cord

Remember: Electricity finds the shortest route to a positive source.

Birds on a wire are safe because there’s no advantage for the power to go through them. It just wants to get to a positive source as quickly as possible.

But if you hold onto a power line while on the ground, you could be in serious trouble.
Birds on a wire are safe
AC vs. DC

With large supplies of DC current, the body may not be given a chance to let go.

One reason AC is safer, is because during the quick change of polarity, the body can let go of the electrical source.

Remember: electricity is a tool, but its power should be respected.
The muscles in your body work, in part, due to tiny amounts of electricity. When in contact with a large amount of electrical current, the muscles “freeze” up and, therefore, don’t let you break the circuit.