Electrical Safety Policy

Title: Electrical Safety Policy
Policy Owner: Environmental Health & Safety
Applies to: Faculty, Staff, Students, Others
Campus Applicability:  All University Campuses except UConn Health
Effective Date: October 24, 2014
For More Information, Contact EHS, Occupational Health and Safety Manager
Contact Information: (860) 486-3613
Official Website: http://www.ehs.uconn.edu/

Last Reviewed Date: 10/24/2014

Effective Date:  10/24/2014

Applies To: Faculty, Staff, Students, Others

For More Information contact: EHS, Occupational Health and Safety Manager at 860-486-3613

   1. Reason for Policy

As documented in the University of Connecticut’s Health & Safety Policy, the University is committed to providing a safe and healthful environment for all activities under the jurisdiction of the University. This electrical safety policy has been published and safety programs developed to assure the safety of employees who may work in the vicinity of, or on, electrical systems; ensure that University employees and all applicable personnel understand and comply with the regulatory requirements and University policies related to electrical work; and ensure that all departments and divisions that perform electrical work on campus follow uniform work practices and regulatory requirements.

This policy mandates adherence with the University’s Electrical Safety Program document which complies with all applicable requirements of the OSHA Electrical Safety Regulations 29 CFR 1910 and 29 CFR 1926; NFPA 70, 70E; and other national consensus standards for electrical distribution work.  Research activities that involve electrical work shall comply with best management practices as outlined in the University’s Electrical Safety for Research document. This policy also establishes the University’s Electrical Safety Committee as the Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ) as defined in NFPA.

   2. Applies To

This policy applies to faculty, staff, students, researchers, and all other individuals performing electrical work at the University of Connecticut Storrs, regional campuses and the Law School.

   3. Definitions

There are three types of electrical work conducted at the University, each with its own risks and each with its own safety control documents. These three types of electrical work are defined below.

Electrical Distribution Work is any installation, testing or modification on or to systems and components from the point of power generation and transmission through distribution and delivery to electrical outlets (receptacles) or other hardwired electrical service.  Electrical distribution work is performed by trained and authorized electricians, line crew and approved contractors with strict adherence to appropriate standards such as the National Electric Code (NFPA 70), the National Electrical Safety Code and the University’s Electrical Safety Program.

Electrical Research Work is any activity, that could involve direct exposure to electrical energy, while operating, troubleshooting or servicing electrical or electronic equipment (utilization equipment) that is managed and maintained by a University Principal Investigators (PI) or their staff in the course of their scientific investigation. Electrical research work must be performed by “Authorized Electrical Workers” in compliance with the University’s Electrical Safety for Research Program.

Incidental Electrical Work is any subordinate activity involving electrical energy; and which does not directly expose personnel to electrical energy in the performance of their primary task.  Examples include plugging and unplugging cord powered devices into a receptacle.

Utilization Equipment is considered any apparatus (scientific or otherwise) that is powered by cord and plug to an electrical outlet; or is a hardwired piece of equipment with the sole purpose to further a scientific investigation.

   4. Policy Statement

According the University’s Health & Safety Policy, “The health and safety of all faculty, staff, students, researchers, contractors and visitors is a principal consideration in the planning and conduct of all University activities and programs, and in the design, construction, modification, or renovation of all University buildings and facilities.” Therefore, electrical work must comply with all requirements and best management practices as defined in the appropriate electrical safety program (Distribution or Research).  

 This broad policy requires that health and safety regulations of Federal, State and local authorities, appropriate consensus standards of recognized organizations, and University protocols are met.


Violations of this policy may result in appropriate disciplinary measures in accordance with University Laws and By-Laws, General Rules of Conduct for All University Employees, applicable collective bargaining agreements, and the University of Connecticut Student Conduct Code.

   5. Procedures/Forms

Electrical Safety Program

Electrical Safety for Research Program