If there were no damp on the plastic, it were similarly insulated from
the wall it was leaning upon and further assuming that the plastic were
non-conducting, then you would not receive a shock from normal mains
voltage via the ladder at least.
Maybe, maybe not. But you will when someone else walks by and touches
the ladder. The shock may not kill either of you, but you will die from
the fall and the other person will die when you land on him.
Paul Hovnanian mailto: snipped-for-privacy@Hovnanian.com
note to spammers: a Washington State resident
<aphexcoil> wrote in message> If I were to stand on a large ladder that had very thick plastic shoes
Okay, I've read the whole thread, all 20ish posts, very interesting. But now
my question is, why touch the conductor in the first place? 3/4" down is the
insulation, use that and forget about "will I or won't I?" I work as an
electrician, I have to work live sometimes, I also use a fiberglass ladder.
But I always grab the wire by the insulation, most of the time I'm more
worried about arcing under load, or short cct's.
I know it was a hypothetical question, my answer is "just don't touch it".
Oh, come on!
If you are talking about 120 volts amd you are wearing regular (but DRY)
shoes, you likely will not feel a thing.
The most likely source of a shock when working in a hot junction box is
touching both the metal box (or the grounded fixture) and the hot at the
I attended the same church as a professional electrician who routinely works
"hot" on the 120 volt (household) stuff. When he was working at my place he
did cross the metal box with hot and trip the beaker (and thus, finished,
that piece of the job "cold."). He also told me that has been knocked out
a few times from shocks and that once he was BLIND for 20 minutes after
The reason I needed him was that it was necessary to disconnect a tap on the
meter side of my panel. It would have been a PITA to get the power company
to pull and replace the meter. He did that job in about 10 minutes. But
since he was there anyway, I had him do some other stuff. Being a pro, he
worked about 5 times as efficiently as me.
I've felt a few tingles here and there, but it was so long ago I don't
remember what the exact situation was. However, I'm very sure I wasn't
wearing wet shoes, or standing in water. Being that I didn't do it on
purpose, I must have "thought" I wasn't grounded.
Lets face it, that's pretty easy to do. The OP was talking about an
electrician (at his office?) who was replacing fixtures live (I think).
Let's say he's standing on a ladder of any material, body is half way up the
drop ceiling. If he's right handed, he would probably be supporting the
fixture with his left hand, possibly resting his arm on the tee-bar, goes to
touch the bare conductor with his right hand, would he get a shock? (Oh
yeah, he's wearing the brand new company golf shirt).
I'm not saying it's wrong to go around and touch live bare wires, I'm not
even saying it's unsafe. But it is poor practice and quite unprofessional
don't you think? Every good electrician has a good set of pliers, I just
don't see the point in not using them.
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