As you may know, there have been some recent updates to OSHA 1910.269(n) and 1926.962. This means that employers should be responsible for ensuring that their personal protective grounding equipment and practices are sufficient to protect their personnel from dangerous differences in electrical potential. This is why it is so important to maintain personal protective ground equipment.
It is common practice to drop personal protective ground sets in the dirt and simply throw them into the back of a truck. However, oxidation, minor damage, and additional contamination can occur on the connections or contact surfaces, significantly decreasing the effectiveness of this equipment should there be a fault current.
Personal protective grounding equipment should always be inspected before use. To do this, always check for loose connections, damage, oxidation and missing components. The cable should not have any damage, such as splits or abrasions in the jacket and there should be no breakage or oxidation in the cable strands. If you find any damage, this equipment should be permanently removed from use. Taking proper care of personal protective grounding equipment also involves correct storage and handling. With this in mind, always use protective bags for equipment when not in use. This will protect it from damage and oxidation.
Periodic electrical testing should also take place at least once a year. Test the equipment more regularly if it is used very often. A ground set tester is a great choice and a good quality device will feature diagnostic probes and a 5 Volt DC source. This will cut through even the most resistant oxidation as oxidation can cause false negatives.
Caring for and maintaining your personal protective grounding equipment on a regular basis will ensure many years of happy use, and a regular review of aspects such as fault current levels is also optimal.