Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Electrical inspections in Center Pivot Systems

Many irrigators have received minor tingles while working around electrical irrigation machinery. Under pressure to keep the system running, they tend to ignore warning signs until serious injury occurs. Two electrical inspection surveys point out the dangers of such practices.
A rural power supplier conducted a series of electrical tests and inspections of electrically driven Center Pivot Systems with electric pump motors. The survey showed 37 % were potentially hazardous because of the lack of a grounding conductor. Nearly 40 % did not have a ground rod installed. More than 50 % failed to have a fuse or a means of disconnection. Other hazardous situations were found, including loose connections, improper circuit and motor protection and deteriorated insulation.
A second series of inspections showed similar results. Of 77 systems inspected at the owners' requests, 10 were classified as lethal; 38 were definitely hazardous; the remaining 29 were potentially hazardous. The 10 lethal systems had current flowing to ground at the time of the inspection or had almost killed someone shortly before the inspection. The National Electrical Code (NEC) had been violated in all 77 installations.


Joesanatomy said...

In Whiteside county ,Illinois two young girls were electrocuted and died July 26 2011.They were part of a detassle crew that came in contact with a field irrigator,and they received an electrical shock as a result.Several others reported feeling the shock.The third crew member was in critical condition and the fourth was admitted and observed.
I am saddened by these young girls dying as a result of an accident that appears could have been prevented.
Where are all the inspectors that are supposed to keep us safe from such devestating accidents?

GG said...

Hi. Does anyone know where these tests were conducted and by whom? Thanks!

Doug said...

Sadly, a 13 year old girl was electrocuted yesterday in Bellvue Colorado and the coroner's report states she was "shocked by 480 volts as she was cleaning a pivot filter in a wet environment."

We do not know the exact circumstances as yet but it pretty clear a 13 year old child should not be working alone around such equipment.