Earth leakage refers to the unwanted flow of electrical current from the live wire (red wire) to the earth wire (green or yellow wire). It is also referred to in some countries as ground leakage or leakage current.
Earth leakage in uncontrolled amounts can be potentially dangerous. It can lead to a rise in voltage, damaging the conducting parts. To detect and control ground leakage, technicians rely on a device known as an earth leakage circuit breaker (ELCB). If a leak is detected, the ELCB automatically cuts of the power supply to the appliance. There are two major kinds of ELCBS: current earth leakage circuit breakers and voltage earth leakage circuit breakers.