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Welcome to Vegas Lawyer. This site is for people who were hurt in Nevada. Contact us for a free consultation. You may want to read the Las Vegas Personal Injury Law introduction on our home page. Also, you can get an overview of other claims like Wrongful Death, Auto Accidents, Slip & Fall, and Products Liability before you explore the Article below.

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  • Pressure Washer Warning


  • Pressure Washer Warning

    Safety Commission Issues Pressure Washer Warning

    A 53-year-old man was electrocuted recently while using an electric pressure washer to wash a truck. This incident has prompted the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission to reissue a consumer alert about these products.

    Pressure washers are devices that are hooked up to a plumbing connection. They pump water under high pressure through a hose, sometimes mixing the water with a cleaning solution. Pressure washers may be used to wash farm equipment, motor vehicles, outdoor power equipment, porches, or houses.

    The Commission warns that consumers could receive a fatal electrical shock from pressure washers if the power cord connections become wet or an internal short exists. At least 13 such fatalities have been reported to the Commission to date, including incidents in Iowa, Louisiana, Minnesota, Alabama, and Illinois.

    One incident involved a 3-year-old boy who was killed when he contacted a pressure washer being used by his father.

    Since pressure washers are used to spray water, the power cord, washer, and consumer are often in contact with water. This can be a fatal combination, especially if the machine is not properly grounded.

    It is important not to defeat a proper ground connection. Consumers should not use "adapter plugs" to connect the three-wire plug to a two-prong household receptacle without properly grounding the adapter plug. Consumers should have three-wire receptacles checked by a competent person to assure that they are properly wired for grounding. Even when the machine is in good mechanical condition and properly grounded, care must be taken to avoid hazardous conditions. For example, power cord connections should never be allowed to lie in water.

    The 1987 edition of the National Electrical Code requires that pressure washers be protected by ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCls). During the past few years the Underwriters Laboratories (UL) voluntary standard for pressure washers has undergone several changes to make the machines safer UL is in the process of adding a new provision that will require that most pressure washers be equipped with built-in GFCIs. However, it may be several years before all pressure washers subject to the UL revisions are available with GFCIs.

    For electric pressure washers, without built-in GFCls, the Commission recommends that electrical circuit being using protected by either a circuit breaker type GFCl or a receptacle type GFCI. If none of the available circuits is protected by a GFCI, portable GFCIs can be purchased at some retail Outlets. Be sure to test the GFCI, before using the pressure washer.

    NEVER allow children to operate a pressure washer. Keep children at a safe distance when an adult is using a pressure washer.

    The Commission also recommends the following precautions, particularly if no GFCI is available:

    Always plug a three-wire grounded pressure washer into a properly grounded receptacle.

    If an extension cord must be used, keep the power cord connection out of any standing water, and use a heavy duty, three-wire, properly grounded type. Keep the connection as far away as possible from the item being washed and away from any water runoff.

    Wear rubber-soled footwear that provides some insulation when operating the pressure washer.

    NEVER cut or splice the power cord or extension cords.

    NEVER remove the grounding prong from the power cord plug!

    NEVER operate the pressure washer after it has tripped a ground fault interrupter or circuit breaker without first having it examined for electrical faults by a competent repair person.

    This information came from a
    CPSC online article.

    *** Any law, statute, regulation or other precedent is subject to change at any time ***

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    DEMPSEY, ROBERTS & SMITH, LTD.
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