Your questions answered: Arc Flash University: A Checkup on Your Electrical Safety Program

H. Landis “Lanny” Floyd, partner and principal consultant with Electrical Safety Group Inc., tackles unanswered questions from the April 21, 2016 webcast on electrical safety programs.

05/05/2016


H. Landis “Lanny” Floyd, partner and principal consultant with Electrical Safety Group Inc., tackles unanswered questions from the April 21, 2016 webcast on electrical safety programs. Courtesy: Electrical Safety Group Inc.H. Landis "Lanny" Floyd, partner and principal consultant with Electrical Safety Group Inc., tackles unanswered questions from the April 21, 2016 webcast on "Arc Flash University: A Checkup on Your Electrical Safety Program."

Q: What are the current statistics for Arc Flash Fatalities and changes in the NFPA-70E lockout tagout?

H. Landis "Lanny" Floyd: The most recent analysis of U.S. occupational electrical injuries and fatalities is from the Fire Protection Research Foundation. The report, " Occupational Injuries from Electrical Shock and Arc Flash Events" can be downloaded free of charge here.

Q: How does one evaluate a poorly performed arc flash study and a well-performed one?

Floyd: The IEEE standards working group responsible for IEEE 1584, Guide for Arc Flash Hazard Calculations recently published a supplement. IEEE 1584.1. This supplement provides guidance on assuring a quality study. An excellent article that covers this is by Jim Phillips, a member of the IEEE 1584 Committee. It is available here.

Q: What's the difference between clothing testing procedures and actual arc flashes in equipment?

Floyd: Clothing testing procedures are conducted according to ASTM standards that minimize variables and assures repeatability at different testing laboratories. Actual arc flashes in the workplace occur with many variables that are not controlled.

Q: How do you feel about proper labeling of safety risks on site?

Floyd: Warnings and labels providing information on hazards and risks should be part of your electrical safety program.

Q: Is there a program available that you recommend to educate non-qualified-electrical personnel enough to perform electrical task?

Floyd: There are several well respected training organizations you could consult with. Shermco Industries, AVO International, and eHazard are three I am familiar with.

Q: Is NFPA looking at revising the Restricted Approach boundary again in 2018? The change from 12" tp 1" for 480 circuits was a major shift.

Floyd: I am not aware of any changes to the restricted approach boundary for the 2018 revision. I think you are incorrect on the change you indicated. The 2012 and 2015 editions of NFPA70E did not change the Restricted Approach Boundary for 480V. It is 1.0 feet.

Q: NEC and NFPA indicate that as long as a panel door is closed you are safe and need no PPE—yet, if that panel is on a bus that "sees" a failure that creates an ARC Flash, that door now becomes a projectile—is this an issue being reviewed by NFPA / NEC?

Floyd: I don't agree that the statement is correct. NFPA 70E article 130.5 requires a hazard analysis and risk assessment to determine what safe work practices and PPE is required. Unless the equipment is arc rated, you should take into a consideration that exposure to arc energy may be possible, even if doors and covers are intact.



Top Plant
The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America. View the 2017 Top Plant.
Product of the Year
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
System Integrator of the Year
Each year, a panel of Control Engineering and Plant Engineering editors and industry expert judges select the System Integrator of the Year Award winners in three categories.
February 2018
2017 Product of the Year winners, retrofitting a press, IMTS and Hannover Messe preview, natural refrigerants, testing steam traps
March 2018
SCCR, 2018 Maintenance study, and VFDs in a washdown environment.
Jan/Feb 2018
Welding ergonomics, 2017 Salary Survey, and surge protection
April 2018
ROVs, rigs, and the real time; wellsite valve manifolds; AI on a chip; analytics use for pipelines
February 2018
Focus on power systems, process safety, electrical and power systems, edge computing in the oil & gas industry
December 2017
Product of the Year winners, Pattern recognition, Engineering analytics, Revitalize older pump installations
April 2018
Implementing a DCS, stepper motors, intelligent motion control, remote monitoring of irrigation systems
February 2018
Setting internal automation standards
December 2017
PID controllers, Solar-powered SCADA, Using 80 GHz radar sensors

Annual Salary Survey

Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.

There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.

But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.

Read more: 2015 Salary Survey

The Maintenance and Reliability Coach's blog
Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
One Voice for Manufacturing
The One Voice for Manufacturing blog reports on federal public policy issues impacting the manufacturing sector. One Voice is a joint effort by the National Tooling and Machining...
The Maintenance and Reliability Professionals Blog
The Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals an organization devoted...
Machine Safety
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
Research Analyst Blog
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
Marshall on Maintenance
Maintenance is not optional in manufacturing. It’s a profit center, driving productivity and uptime while reducing overall repair costs.
Lachance on CMMS
The Lachance on CMMS blog is about current maintenance topics. Blogger Paul Lachance is president and chief technology officer for Smartware Group.
Maintenance & Safety
The maintenance journey has been a long, slow trek for most manufacturers and has gone from preventive maintenance to predictive maintenance.
Industrial Analytics
This digital report explains how plant engineers and subject matter experts (SME) need support for time series data and its many challenges.
IIoT: Operations & IT
This digital report will explore several aspects of how IIoT will transform manufacturing in the coming years.
Randy Steele
Maintenance Manager; California Oils Corp.
Matthew J. Woo, PE, RCDD, LEED AP BD+C
Associate, Electrical Engineering; Wood Harbinger
Randy Oliver
Control Systems Engineer; Robert Bosch Corp.
Data Centers: Impacts of Climate and Cooling Technology
This course focuses on climate analysis, appropriateness of cooling system selection, and combining cooling systems.
Safety First: Arc Flash 101
This course will help identify and reveal electrical hazards and identify the solutions to implementing and maintaining a safe work environment.
Critical Power: Hospital Electrical Systems
This course explains how maintaining power and communication systems through emergency power-generation systems is critical.
click me