Electricians install, connect, test, and maintain electrical systems for a variety of purposes, including climate control, security and communications. The electricians use a variety of electrical equipment and apply appropriate techniques; plan wiring installation from blueprints; properly locate boxes and outlets; and test continuity of electrical circuits to ensure compatibility and safety of components following national electrical code and complying with state and local building codes. In addition to wiring a building’s electrical systems, electricians may install coaxial or fiber optic cable for computers and other telecommunications equipment.
Electrical work can be indoors or outdoors. The work is sometimes physically strenuous requiring prolonged standing in cramped or uncomfortable positions. Electricians may work in dusty, dirty, hot and wet conditions, or in confined areas, ditches or other uncomfortable places. The working environment varies with each job and may include working on ladders and scaffolding. Electricians follow strict safety procedures to prevent injuries from electrical shock, falls and cuts.
In the classroom, apprentices learn blueprint reading, electrical theory, electronics, mathematics, electrical code requirements, and safety and first aid practices.