Electrical Extension Cords


Extension cords are one of the most abused and neglected items on the job site. They are run over, stretched, pulled, twisted and exposed to all the elements. They have been the cause of more accidents than the tools for which they are used.

The following recommendations should be observed whenever extension cords are used:

  • Prior to use, inspect cords to ensure that:
  • The insulation is intact around the plugs at both ends of the cord.
  • The pins on the plugs are not broken or burned.
  • The outer jacket of the cable is intact along its entire length.
  • Extension cords should be replaced or repaired when a defect is found.
  • Do not assume that everyone is able to repair or replace plug caps. All personnel should be educated to recognize the importance of properly wired circuits.
  • Use only cords that are rated for outdoor use on construction jobs. These industrial cables (types S, SO, SOW) are oil, water, and abrasion resistant.
  • Never unplug any cord by pulling the cable.
  • Never lay out a cord in any area where it could be damaged by vehicular or pedestrian traffic or where materials could fall or be piled on it.