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Arc Flash &  Preventive Electrical Maintenance

 

 What is Arc Flash?

Arc Flash occurs when an energized conductor is shorted and ionization of the air occurs. When this happens, the arc faults create large amounts of heat that can severly burn human skin and set clothing on fire. At this time a plasma cloud is present from the fault in a radial direction potentially inuring workers.

 

What does OSHA and the NEC say about Arc Flash?

OSHA 29 CFR 1910.132(d) requires employers to assess the workplace to determine if hazards are present or likely to be present, to select and have qualified employees use the type of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) as required by an equipment specific hazard analyisis.

NEC 2005 110.16 addresses Arc Flash in stating that "Switchboards, panelboards, industrial control panels and motor control centers... that are likely to require examination, adjustment, servicing or maintenance while energized shall be field marked to warn qualified persons of potential Arc Flash hazards.

NFPA 70E-2004, states that a flash hazard anaylisis must be preformed in order to determine the level of hazard and appropriate PPE for givin tasks.

 

Why combine Preventive Electrical Maintenance with an Arc Flash Study?

Without preforming regular Preventive Maintenance on Electrical Equipment, you may be exposing employees to unknown dangers such as bad or defective breaker trip units, or knife blade switches that are welded in the closed position as examples. Other anomalies also may contain risk.

You may have all the equipment labeled properly and your employees may be wearing the proper equipment per the labeling, but if the equipment has not been tested and maintained to assure proper operation your employees as well as your business operations could be at risk.

We Have Highly Skilled Arc Flash Specialists to Answer All Your Questions as Well as Performing Indepth Arc Flash Studies of Your Facility.

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