Date: July 2, 2002
Editor: R. Casey, N. Gmür
Recently, an NSLS beamline user experienced a potentially serious electrical shock. The user experienced pain in both forearms and received minor burns to both thumbs. The incident was classified as a “Near Miss”, and attracted wide attention within the Laboratory and at DOE Headquarters. In the incident, operational difficulties in monitoring sample temperature led to an attempt to measure DC current by placing a conventional multimeter in series with the power supply and heating unit. In the configuration that was established, a low current/low voltage BNC connector became energized at 1000 VDC and the user was shocked when he touched the connector. More details of the incident are available at: http://www.nsls.bnl.gov/esh/highlights/pdf/critique_hilite30.pdf.
There are three important lessons-learned from this incident that staff and users must take very seriously:
The most important step starts with you!
These lessons-learned are very important to remember and to put into daily practice. NSLS and beamline staff should emphasize these important issues to short-term users. Excellent safety performance is an essential for the NSLS and its future. Incidents of this type can seriously injure one of our employees or users and result in a significant impact to the operation of our facility. It is important that all work be done safely and in compliance with NSLS and BNL standards.