Workplaces that put up light fixtures to provide lighting also have to ensure that these fixtures don't negatively impact the safety of employees. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has certain requirements relating to protection for such light fixtures. They should have adequate covers so that employees are not exposed to them.
Covers for Light Fittings
OSHA requires that employers should provide covers for all lighting fixtures such as pull boxes, junction boxes and fittings. This helps keep employees from being exposed to any hazard from such fixtures. If the fixtures are installed well above the ground so that employees don't come into contact with them, employers may feel that there is no need for such covers. However, employees could still have contact with the fixtures through the use of ladders or by accidental contact when carrying objects such as a long, conducive metal piping. In any situation where there is even a possibility of contact, even accidental contact, OSHA still requires light covers.
The OSHA standards also call for employers to close fittings with covers that are securely fastened in place. This requirement only applies to pull and junction boxes on a lighting system that has a capacity of more than 600 volts. If the conductors in the box don't have a capacity of more than 600 volts, this OSHA light cover requirement does not apply.
Employers should make sure that light fixtures, lamp holders, lamps, rosettes and other receptacles do not have any live parts that are exposed to employee contact in the normal course. OSHA considers that the openings in a switch or outlet box are big enough for an employee to stick his finger inside and receive an electric shock from contact with live parts. Covers should always be in place and should not be removed even for a temporary period. For instance, an employer should not remove such covers in an office reception area while preparing walls for painting.