Berkeley Lab

Electrical Safety Program

Purpose & Objectives of the Electrical Safety Program

In the United States, 4,000 nondisabling and 3,600 disabling electrical contact injuries occur in the workplace annually. A total of 2,000 workers are sent to burn centers with electric burns each year. Most of the burn victims become permanently disabled from their injuries. Typically, the victims’ lives are forever restricted due to sensitivity to cold weather, mobility, or other physical barriers. Every day one person dies from an electrical incident.

In order to prevent these types of electrical injuries, Berkeley Lab has a comprehensive Electrical Safety Program (ESP).

The objectives of the Electrical Safety Program are as follows:

  1. Prevent electrical-related injuries.
  2. Implement proactive controls across the spectrum of expected hazards.
  3. Educate the lab population about electrical hazards.
  4. Promote a vibrant electrical safety culture.
  5. Demonstrate compliance to established standards.

Regulatory Drivers

The primary objective of the Electrical Safety Program is to prevent electrical-related injuries. That said, national regulations and consensus standards have distilled a significant body of knowledge into minimum safety requirements that the Lab is contractually obligated to implement. These drivers include:

  • OSHA 29 CFR 1910, General Industry, Subpart S, Electrical
  • OSHA 29 CFR 1926, Construction, Subpart K, Electrical
  • NFPA 70E, Standard for Electrical Safety in the Workplace

For a full description of the flow-down of regulatory drivers, click here.

Implementing Policies and Documents

The primary institutional requirements are documented in the ES&H Manual, Chapter 8, Electrical Safety Program. Specific electrical safe work practices, including how to analyze hazards and implement suitable controls, are detailed in the Electrical Safety Manual. Select the icons below for direct access to each document.

ES&H Manual, Chapter 8, Electrical Safety Program Electrical Safety Manual


The written Electrical Safety Program documents were last updated in January 2017. If you’re interested in reviewing the primary changes to the document, contact your ESO.