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36th year apprentice & Floor Sweeper
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I have three insulated tools. A #2 square tip, #2 Philips, and a flat blade screwdriver. I only bought them five years ago after being in the trade for thirty eight years. Ive only used them a few times for breaker change outs. Normaly I would just use regular screwdrivers. I wouldn't go moving the fingers (the small pieces off the main buss) around on a live buss, just replace a breaker
 

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Come work on a plc running a whole plant and check inputs and outputs for troubleshooting. See how that works out with the power off.
That’s a totally different scenario than I’m envisioning. I see those dumb insulated nut drivers, sockets sets, allen sets, and every type of plier imaginable. Who would ever need all that?

Working controls energized is the only way to do it and I understand using an insulated shank screwdriver to avoid accidental contact with anything else. I always just put a wrap of 33 around the shank and call it good.


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Mislabeled, cut too short, and forgot a wire
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This thread would have been better if started with “For those of you who do hot work, which insulated tools do you recommend?”

The screwdrivers are the only thing worth their money, really. Work for a place that has protocol for hot work. Use their bulky insulated pliers, with the huge hot gloves over leather gloves, with the hot suit on, and tell me how safe you feel working on the equipment. I felt like I was more prone to make a mistake with all that gear on, not to mention how actually hot it is in the hot suit. Sweating bullets and I can hardly hold onto the linemans. Forget about trying to catch or hold a screw.
 

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But what about when I need to cut live cables and bus bar?
I suppose everyone else assumed you were joking. You are joking are you not?

I ask because I served 45 years as a Firefighter and Emergency Medical Technician. I responded to several electric shock injuries over that period I can only remember one which was not an electrocution. The circumstances varied quite a bit. The Station at which I volunteered has a response area which is quite diverse in terms of occupancy type. It ranges from single family homes to small scale industrial.

From the traffic control light installer to the television repairman the consequence of contact with an energized conductor was usually fatal. The one shock survivor I can recall was a water utility employee. She got bit hard to the point of being burned when she tried to remove a residential water meter which did not have the bonding bypass required by the US National Electric Code. Not really a surprise I suppose since the house was post World War 2 veterans housing. Her bad luck was that the house had an open utility neutral at the pole were the service drop came from. When she opened that unintended neutral conductor; which was connected to the transformer's neutral through the service drop of adjacent homes; there was 120 volts across the gap in the water service lateral's copper pipe. The water utility here does not allow the use of plastic pipe for water service laterals. There entire piping system is metallic as long as you include the reinforcing steel in the large concrete pipes.

The burn center is only 15 minutes away at that time of day and we took a couple of those corners on three wheels. Electrical burns being internal there was no field treatment that I could actually provide. I put ice packs on the burned limb but there was no point in waiting for a Paramedic staffed unit to give her morphine because it is contraindicated in unassessed internal injury. She was a deeply religious woman and was reciting psalms in-route. I am unashamed that I recited the only one I could recall for her. In spite of her intense pain she smiled.

There is a river which makes glad the city of God the dwelling place of the most high.
God is within her, she will not be moved for God will help her as surely as the morning comes.

I would share that psalm with woman in labor who were having a tough time. That is the only reason I knew it. The first line of every emergency medical protocol in my State reads "Calm and reassure the patient." I always did the best I could. I gradually learned that it really is important enough to have top billing.

She returned to work after nearly 2 months in the burn center. Her employer was immune from any lawsuit by the workman's compensation law. The investor owned utility not so much. They took a bath on that one. For about a year afterwards the electrical utility offered a bounty on open neutral detection's. I went door to door in the evenings after work offering to check homes for a possible safety flaw at no cost to the owners. I collected enough of those bounties to take my family on a vacation to the Maine coast. What me shameless? I don't know why you would say that!

"No we aren't no kind of heroes and yet we aren't no blackguards to.
We're just working men and women most remarkable like you.
 

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Insulated tools are designed to avoid accidental contact.

If you drop a tool in a live panel which would you rather drop. Before finger safe it was common as hell for someone to cause a accidental short between 2 circuits on the back of a hoa switch. (that' why they made insulated tip covers for a volt meter)

Accidents happen, People drive screws into hidden wires. Whats the harm in a extra layer of protection.
 
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