When your job involves working directly with high voltage equipment, it is critical to remain alert about particular dangers. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reports that nearly half of all workplace deaths that are electrical-related, arc blast explosions and arc flash are the main culprits.Therefore, arc flash training of all staff is vital to ensure you and your employees work safely. If you have yet to take the necessary steps to prevent injuries and fatalities, read further to learn why prevention is key.Reducing the Risk of Arc Blast IncidentsTo effectively reduce the risk of incidents is to have a well-informed prevention program in place. Employees who are knowledgeable about the dangers are more equipped to stay safe. Thorough planning of the safety program begins with accessing a few things.Being a Responsible EmployerBefore work on high-voltage equipment begins, you should fully embrace your responsibilities as an employer. The same goes for your employees. While they should be aware of what is expected of them, this does not negate the fact that the employer holds the highest level of responsibility – and liability.Not only must you be fully acquainted with the risk involved with arc flash, but you must also make sure employees are trained properly. Making sure employees work with the right tools is also part of this responsibility.In addition, employees must understand their responsibility to coworkers and themselves when dealing with this type of material. Working in accordance with all safety practices and procedures at all times is only part of this expectation. They should know that wearing proper clothing and being aware of conditions and surroundings at the jobsite will help to keep everyone safe.Calculating Hazard LevelsRisk potential for an arc flash incident varies. Therefore, calculating hazard levels within and surrounding the workplace is crucial before a prevention program begins. Called a flash hazard analysis, this calculation determines and documents various details that define the proper working distance for each situation. Arc duration, equipment class, system voltages and bolted fault are just a few that informs the best way to approach training and prevention.In all planning, accuracy is the best tool at your disposal for accomplishing the goal of having a safe work environment. A qualified risk assessment specialist will conduct the arc hazard analysis for a fee, if you choose not to do it yourself. The price you would pay is certainly worth the result of not having a life or death situation facing employees each day they come to work.
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