The NFPA 70E has been the go-to playbook for electrical safety practices since 1979 when it was first published. To keep it updated and current, every three years it is revised to include new regulations and requirements for electrical safety. The 11th edition, also known as the 2018 version, is right around the corner and there are hundreds of minor and major revisions specifically, regarding Arc Flash that you need to educate yourself on.
So, what does all this mean to you the employer? Why should you care?
Complying with consensus standards can be difficult. NFPA 70E offers electrical safe work practices for the industry. The NFPA 70E is a how-to-comply instruction manual for several of OSHA’s regulations including electrical hazard assessments and how to select the appropriate PPE for electrical hazards. It is however ever changing and keeping up with all the changes can be difficult.
OSHA enforces compliance to NFPA 70E using Section 5(a)(1) of the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, which is commonly referred to as the GENERAL DUTY CLAUSE, as the basis for implementation. As the employer, you “shall furnish to each of its employees’ employment and a place of employment which are free from recognized hazards that are causing or likely to cause death or serious physical harm to employees.” As a result, companies can be cited by OSHA for non-compliance of NFPA 70E.
It is more important than ever that you utilize a third party that specializes in Arc Flash Risk Assessments and has the experience and knowledge of the OSHA and NFPA 70E requirements. Call Thompson Automation and Specialty Services today at 844.321.3869 to learn more and to find out how we can help you stay compliant with OSHA and the new NFPA 70E standards.
Thompson Automation and Specialty Services was pleased to support the Nebraska Safety Council Conference and Trade Show October 11th and 12th, 2017 at the Cornhusker Marriott Hotel in Lincoln, NE. This exciting conference brought together a larget group of safety professionals to keep current on a broad range of issues, get valuable training, and network with colleagues and industry experts. Jason Glover of Thompson was there to discuss some of the new OSHA, NFPA 70E, electrical safety and preventive maintenance needs for the varying industries in Nebraska.
Thompson strongly supports the Nebraska Safety Council and WorkWell mission of enhancing Nebraska’s safety initiatives by offering professional training, education and technical assistance. Great training and great technology allows the industry to propel itself forward and provide innovative solutions to solve Nebraska largest safety issues. Thompson Automation and Specialty Services provides automation & controls support and specialty electrical services to help our customers operate their facilities more efficiently, keep in compliance with government and safety standards, run electrical systems at optimal energy efficiency levels, and help reduce the ever-growing energy costs. Services like Arc Flash Risk Assessment, Thermal Imaging, Breaker Testing, Electrical Preventative Maintenance, and courses in Electrical Safety Training all help keep a work environment safe and free from accidents.
Contact us today for more information on how we can help your business operate safely, energy efficiently, cost-effectively, and in compliance for years to come.
I look at risk as a combination of probability and consequences. If the probability and consequences of an accident are low, then the risk is low. If the probability is high and the consequences are high, then the risk is high. Perceived risks then drive spending and investments and while we can’t put a specific value on reducing risk we typically will measure an expected Return on Investment (ROI) for what we spend. If you have not already made the investment to have an Arc Flash Risk Assessment done at your facility you need to know about and consider the probability and consequences.
The probability of an Arc Flash is related to the quality, care, and age of your electrical system. The consequences of an Arc Flash can be devastating. Arc Flash explosions are known to cause serious damage to your facility and personnel. What is the impact to your business if an arc flash explosion shuts your production line or facility down for a day, a week or a month? You need to consider the total financial loss of an accident; costs that include the disruption of your business and to your customers can be substantial. Regulatory fines alone can be crippling.
An Arc Flash Risk Assessment is required by OSHA and will-full noncompliance can quickly extend fines into the millions of dollars. What about future expenses then like increased insurance rates and injury settlements. It can be shuttering to consider, but what about the cost of a death of an employee.
The good news in all this, however, is that the cost of having an Arc Flash Risk Assessment done is low. It’s very hard to place hard numbers on the cost of an accident. However, if the risk of an accident is rather high but the investment is low, it makes the decision easier to deal with. An Arc Flash and the resulting explosions can be devastating to your organization and the employee that is not properly prepared or protected against it. Whether your motivation is to protect your employees, meet the OSHA requirements, or protect against future expenses; having an Arc Flash Risk Assessment completed by qualified and trained professionals is important. Contact the experienced Arc Flash specialists at Thompson Automation and Specialty Services at 844-321-3869 today to learn more or to have them perform an Arc Flash analysis for your facility.