Electrical hazards

Electricity is a useful form of energy but it can also be very dangerous. There are lots of ways in which we can be electrocuted including:

  • touching frayed electrical cables
  • long or overheating cables
  • damaged or incorrectly wired plugs
  • allowing water or wet objects to enter plug sockets or touch frayed cables
  • pushing metal objects into plug sockets
Glossary
  1. conductor A material which allows charge to move easily through it.
  2. current Moving electric charges, eg electrons moving through a metal wire.
  3. electrocute Cause injury or death by an electric shock.
  4. fuse An electrical component that protects circuits and electrical devices from overload by melting when the current becomes too high.
  5. insulator Material that does not allow charge or heat to pass through it easily.
  6. potential difference The potential difference (or voltage) of a supply is a measure of the energy given to the charge carriers in a circuit. Units = volts (V). This is the voltage between two points that makes an electric current flow between them.
  7. resistance The opposition in an electrical component to the movement of electrical charge through it. Resistance is measured in ohms.