Conceptual Physics (12th Edition)

Published by Addison-Wesley
ISBN 10: 0321909100
ISBN 13: 978-0-32190-910-7

Chapter 23 - Reading Check Questions (Comprehension): 14

Answer

The round third prong is "grounded", literally connecting the case of the appliance to the ground.

Work Step by Step

The ground wire prevents charge buildup and accidental shock, especially in the event that a live wire accidentally contacts the metal surface of the appliance. This is discussed on page 436, and shown in Figure 23.8.
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