BSA Radio Merit Badge – Requirement Six

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Explain the safety precautions for working with radio gear, including the concept of grounding for direct current circuits, power outlets, and antenna systems.

While working on radios is fun, it’s important to be safe.  Here are some good rules to follow:

  • Electrical shock can hurt or kill – make sure the power is disconnected before working.
  • Even with the power off, some parts inside the radio can hold a dangerous charge. If you don’t know what you are doing, get help.
  • Radio Frequency (RF) can burn – keep antennas out of reach .
  • Strong RF radiation can be unhealthy – Don’t use a radio when it is not completely assembled. The case keeps the RF radiation where it should be.
  • Make sure antennas can’t touch any power lines or you could be electrocuted when using the radio.
  • Lightning can hit your antenna and travel down your lines to the radio. Make sure your antenna and radio are grounded to a good earth ground.
  • Be careful working on towers and roofs so you don’t fall or drop something onto someone on the ground.