Monday, May 20, 2024

The State Of Electrical Wiring At UNZA and CBU

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By Michael Musonda

Electrical wiring is a critical component of modern infrastructure, enabling the delivery of electricity to various points of use. However, the electrical wiring at our two highest institutions of learning often raises concerns that must be addressed urgently, especially in light of the recent incident involving the death of a female student allegedly due to electrocution.

One major challenge faced by both universities is outdated electrical wiring systems, which have not been updated to meet current load and revised safety standards since the construction of the buildings many decades ago. This can lead to issues such as overloaded circuits, insulation degradation, and inadequate earthing, significantly increasing the risk of electrical accidents.

Additionally, there is evidence of little to no maintenance of electrical systems as shown by pictures circulating on social media and our investigations.

Another issue to note is overcrowding in university hostels, which has led students to modify electrical outlets or install additional ones to provide more points for access. This DIY approach, often carried out by unqualified individuals, can further compromise electrical safety.

Furthermore, the two learning institutions were designed to have centrally located cooking places and dining rooms, which no longer exist, leading to students using cookers, fridges, and other appliances in their rooms. This additional load may not have been accounted for in the original wiring, creating further safety concerns such as overloading.

To improve the state of electrical wiring at these universities, as an electrical safety advocate, I recommend the following measures:

  1. Conducting a detailed electrical wiring system audit with a focus on safety
  2. Upgrading outdated electrical wiring systems to meet current load and safety standards
  3. Instituting regular inspections and maintenance of electrical systems as per the wiring code of practice and other relevant standards
  4. Implementing /improving a system for reporting and addressing electrical issues.
  5. Raise awareness among students and staff about electrical safety with a focus on hazard identification.

The state of electrical wiring at our two universities is a serious concern and must be treated as such. By prioritizing regular maintenance and raising awareness on the dangers of electricity, the two universities can ensure a reliable and safe electrical system that does not endanger the safety of their students.

Disclaimer: Opinions expressed are wholly mine and do not represent those of my employer.

5 COMMENTS

  1. Lack of maintenance and adherence to safety standards are the causes for electrical hazards at these public institutions.

  2. Well, I thought those doing electrical engineering at the Institution can take up this as an academic project and leave results for consideration by the Institution.

  3. We have half baked students who can’t implement the theory into practice.They all want to be managers.

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