Friday, September 28, 2012

Arc Flash Training Held at Res-Kem

Arc flash training, an OSHA required session to help identify the risks around working with electrical and signal wires, was given to twenty people with our organization.  It helps the technicians fully understand the risks, and how to determine if there is any stored energy before starting work.

Injuries that can result from an arc flash:
  • Burns
  • Respiratory system damage
  • Hearing damage
  • Skin penetration from flying debris
  • Eye and face injuries

We covered the risks with performing the work, Lock-Out Tag-Out (LOTO,) testing methods and Personal Protection Equipment (PPE). The twenty people trained included plant and field personnel that have not yet completed this certification class, including field service technicians, in-house assembly personnel, and field sales engineers.

What is an arc flash?
"An arc flash is an electric arc supplied with sufficient electrical energy to cause substantial damage, fire or injury. ...  Arc flash temperatures can reach or exceed 35,000 °F or approx 20,000 °C at the arc terminals. The massive energy released in the fault rapidly vaporizes the metal conductors involved, blasting molten metal and expanding plasma outward with extreme force. A typical arc flash incident can be inconsequential but could conceivably easily produce a more severe explosion ... .  The result of the violent event can cause destruction of equipment involved, fire, and injury not only to the worker but also to nearby people."

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