Have you ever received a sharp jolt when you touched a surface or even another person? This can certainly wake you up, and it's not really harmful in any way, but it's an example of static electricity in action. You may think that it is nothing to worry about in your commercial environment, even though you've noticed it's been happening quite regularly of recent time. However, if you're not careful, it can have a significant effect on your business in a variety of different ways. What should you be aware of and what steps should you take?
Static electricity can be much more prevalent during the winter time when humidity levels tend to be a lot lower.
You need to be particularly aware of the risk if you work with any type of flammable material or gasoline, as static electricity can create a spark which, in a contained environment, could potentially cause an explosion.
However, most companies will not have this level of risk, but they should certainly be aware of the consequences, should a static discharge affect computers or other expensive machinery. In this case, electrostatic energy travels from the source and through the internal circuitry, damaging critical components as it does so.
In order to avoid this type of risk, try to make sure that your humidity levels are uniform, no matter what time of day or season of the year.
Install some static-proof mats for people to stand on when they are interacting with these machines or treat the carpets to avoid the buildup of static.
Clearing the Area
As you may know, polystyrene or plastic materials can often trigger an outbreak of static discharge, so you should avoid storing them anywhere near to your expensive electronic equipment.
Worth the Effort
It's worth going to these lengths to try and address this problem. Even though you may think it is relatively harmless, static discharge can cause a lot of damage and potential downtime, particularly in the case of larger pieces of electronic equipment.
If you have to bring in outside contractors to work on your electrical installation, or to deal with any equipment that could be vulnerable, you will notice that they wear a special wrist strap that is meant to mitigate any electrostatic discharge. Take a tip from these professionals and require all of your staff to do so, if they need to work with this equipment in the meantime.
For more information, contact your local commercial electrician today.