PC Hardware

Lesson 2: Safety and the Environment

Lesson 1 discussed several ways in which to keep a computer's hardware running at peak performance. When maintaining or servicing a computer, several guidelines should be followed to protect you and the environment. This lesson summarizes how to maintain a safe workplace and minimize negative impacts on the environment.

After this lesson, you will be able to:
  • Prepare a safe work environment and prevent damage to the computer, yourself, and the environment.

  • Manage the components of a computer that have negative effects on our environment.

Estimated lesson time: 15 minutes

Computers and their peripheral devices are electronic equipment, consequently, most safety issues relate to electrical power. However, when you work on this equipment, there are several other concerns to take into consideration, as listed in the next page table.

General Safety

Computers and their peripheral devices are electronic equipment, consequently, most safety issues relate to electrical power. However, when you work on this equipment, there are several other concerns to take into consideration, as listed in the following table.

Problems and Preventions

Back injuries

Some equipment, such as printers, monitors, and even the computer itself, can weigh several pounds (10 to 20 pounds or more for newer, larger monitors). This might not seem like much; however, when the equipment is improperly picked up (or dropped), back or other injuries can result. Be especially careful when removing a component from its original packaging. These components are generally packaged very tightly to provide protection during transport and can be difficult to remove.

Cuts

Be very careful when removing covers from computer components. The frames of the cases are often made of thin metal with sharp edges. Also, poorly cut or stamped parts might still have metal burrs, which are very sharp. Devices such as scanners and monitors have glass components that can break.

Tripping hazards

Computers tend to have many cables and wires. If not properly installed, these wires and cables can constitute a serious tripping hazard. Use cable ties to bundle up cables and reduce the "spaghetti" effect. Also avoid running cables under carpets and where people walk.

When installing or working on any equipment, make sure that the work done conforms to all applicable local and national safety codes, such as OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) and NEC (National Electric Code) standards. Most companies have their own internal safety departments and safety manuals. Be sure that you are familiar with them as well.

by BrainBellupdated
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