ELECTRICAL SAFETY: MEETING OSHA AND NFPA 70E REQUIREMENTS
You’re required to meet certain OSHA and NFPA 70E compliance standards in the areas of arc ﬂash and electrical safety. U.S. Compliance can help you meet these requirements. This service offers a concise package of deliverables that may include the following based on your unique needs:
- A short circuit study and development of time current curves for protective devices
- A protective device coordination study
- Short circuit line diagrams
- Comprehensive single-line diagrams for all services in building
- An SOP for keeping single-line diagrams up to date
- Incident energy calculations for devices included in the arc ﬂash study
- Electrical safety training programs
- Guidance on developing an electrical safety program
- Guidance on developing an electrically energized work permit system
- Guidance on developing a PPE program
- Assist in establish a glove management program
OSHA & NFPA 70E CODES/STANDARDS
NFPA 70E is the consensus standard that OSHA’s uses to develop their regulatory standards. The following is a summary OSHA & NFPA 70E codes and standards. The summaries below can give you a quick regulatory snapshot into the requirements and the solutions our partners can provide.
- NFPA 70E, ARTICLE 105 outlines the responsibilities of the employer and the employee(s) regarding electrical safety. The employer is responsible for providing safety-related work procedures, training employees in the practices, supervising the employees, auditing, and documenting. The employees are responsible for applying the work procedures in accordance with their training and their demonstrated ability.
- NFPA 70E, ARTICLE 110.1.A requires that the employer implement and document an electrical safety program—as part of the employer’s overall occupational health and safety management system— that directs employees on the proper procedures.
- NFPA 70E, ARTICLE 110.2.D.3 says employees should be retrained in safety-related work practices in intervals of three years or less.
- NFPA 70E 120.2 says each employer must identify, document, and implement lockout/tagout procedures that safeguard employees from electrical hazards. The procedures should be appropriate for the workplace conditions and training.
- NFPA 70E, ARTICLE 130.5 says an arc flash assessment must be completed to determine if an arc flash hazard exists, taking into consideration the design of the overcurrent protective device, its opening time, and its condition of maintenance. The assessment must be updated if a major modification or renovation takes place, and it must be reviewed periodically, at intervals not to exceed 5 years.
- NFPA 70E 130.7.E.2 communicates the need for creating approach boundaries/barricades in work areas that contain energized conductors or circuit parts. In the case of the arc flash, the boundary is based on the inverse square of the distance to the hazard. In other words, if you halve the distance to the arc ﬂash hazard, the available incident energy increases by a factor of four.
- NFPA 70E 130.5(C)(1) allows for two methods of selecting PPE: The Incident Energy Method (arc ﬂash study) or the Arc Flash Categories PPE Method (use the tables). When tables are used, however, the currents and clearing times included in the equipment category/ rating headings must be checked to confirm that use of the tables is permitted. If a task is not in the tables—or the working distance is closer than those used in the tables or the clearing time of the arcing current—then the arc flash study should be used instead.
- OSHA’S Electrical Safe Work Practices (CFR 1910.333) says safety-related work practices are needed to prevent electric shock when work is performed near or on equipment/circuits that are or may be energized. Completing an arc ﬂash study, along with applying proper labeling to the devices, clearly communicates what the hazards are.
- OSHA’S Safeguards for Employee Protection (CFR 1910.335) says employees working in areas where there are potential electrical hazards must be provided with, and use, electrical protective equipment that is appropriate for the specific parts of the body to be protected and for the work to be performed.