The 4 Most Dangerous Parts Of An Electrician's Job

Electricians are at the forefront of a vital industry. With more and more of our lives depending upon electrical appliances, a steady, safe source of power is more important now than ever before. Becoming an electrician isn't an easy task, and their job is no walk in the park. Here is a look at the 5 most dangerous parts of an electrician's job.

Working With Electricity

This one is the most obvious, of course, but maybe you're unaware of how dangerous working with electricity can really be. Electrical shock is a risk of the job, and can cause damage ranging from minor burns to cardiac arrest. Electricians are trained to minimize these risks, but human error and freak accidents have caused serious and even fatal injuries to electricians and their assistants over the years. 

Electrical engineers are constantly working on creating safer circuits for homes and offices to keep those who service them out of harm's way. That doesn't mean there are no risks to electricians, especially the ones who are working on older electrical systems.


Part of an electrician's job is to crawl around in old attics, crawlspaces and basements. In houses built before 1978, insulation, siding and even flooring often contained asbestos. Usually, asbestos doesn't pose any serious health threat, but when it is disturbed, as is often done during electrical work, it can release tiny fibers into the air. When breathed often over the course of a career, asbestos can cause cancer and damage to the lungs. 

If your electrician arms him or herself with a NIOSH mask and disposable coveralls before their journey into your crawlspace, don't be alarmed. They are simply protecting themselves from the dangers of being exposed to asbestos.

Bugs and Badgers and Bats, Oh My!

It's no secret that critters like to make their homes in inconvenient (for you, not for them) places. While on a mission, some electricians have encountered venomous spider species, including brown recluse and black widow spiders. Their bites can be extremely painful and cause serious infection and health effects. Wasps' nests, and fire ant infestations are other creepy crawlies that might cause a hazard for an electrician.

Small, but fierce mammals can also call crawlspaces, attics and cellars home. Bats are the primary vector for rabies virus, making them a serious threat for electricians, and badgers can inflict serious wounds when they are disturbed. Snakes often nest in shady, underground places. Electricians usually wear thick gloves and long sleeves to venture into dark places for this reason.

Even small and not fierce animals can pose a health threat. Mouse droppings can release various diseases into the air, such as hauntavirus. A filtering mask is necessary for electricians whenever these hazards are encountered.

Injuries from Faulty Construction

You've no doubt seen the part in a movie when someone falls through a second story floor because of rot. That's not an imaginary scenario, and because electricians boldly go where few have gone before, they may encounter construction problems you didn't even know existed. Walking or crawling around in areas that aren't inspected regularly can lead to broken bones, and cuts or scrapes (and therefore tetanus, if they don't keep up on their vaccines).

Working on the electrical systems of homes today is a dangerous, but vital enterprise. It isn't as simple as it may seem, and the risks are clear and present. The next time you call for an electrical consult from places like, keep that in mind. Go ahead and thank your electrician for being willing to take those risks. A batch of cookies is always a welcome thank you gift!