Arc flash safety is not something that you hear about often. In the electrical contractor’s world, arc flash safety can be a “life or death” situation so it is taken very seriously. What is an “Arc Flash”? An arc flash is the light and heat produced as part of an arc fault, a type of electrical explosion or discharge that results from a low-impedance connection through air to ground or another voltage phase in an electrical system. This explosion can result in injury or death and is a serious issue facing electrical contractors who work in an environment that is conducive to arc flash. As OSHA and NFPA 70E continue to develop and enforce more stringent electrical safety requirements, it is important for industrial facility managers and plant managers to be informed about arc flash and to implement appropriate safety procedures into an electrical safety program that minimizes the likelihood of injury to their employees or contractors, like Ozburn Electrical Contractors, Inc., who service their electrical needs.
Ozburn Electrical, known for being a industry leader in continuing education for their employees, recently had four employees graduate from “Arc Flash” safety class. These four included Daniel Rowell, Micky Anderson, Rocky Nelson and Russell Hughes. The “Arc Flash” class ensures that qualified personnel are trained and knowledgeable on electrical equipment operation per NFPA 70E rules and regulations. This can be achieved by using a risk assessment procedure as identified in NFPA 70E. Arc flash prevention methods could include assigning appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) for the appropriate task and not working on electrical equipment while it is energized. Ozburn’s top objectives are for employee safety while providing a safe work environment thereby maintaining compliance with OSHA’s electrical safety requirements. When speaking about employee safety, Harold Ozburn, owner of Ozburn Electrical Contractors, said that “Ozburn’s utmost responsibility is providing a safe work environment for our employees and for our customers. We know that when we practice, meet and surpass OSHA and NEC requirements, we are able to achieve a safe workplace. Ozburn Electrical’s staff can sleep soundly at night knowing that employee and customer care is of utmost importance.”
Federal laws and regulations address a variety of safety issues, including electrical safety requirements, that are necessary for safeguarding employees in the workplace. OSHA addresses electrical safety requirements for all employee workplaces, including commercial office and industrial environments. The arc flash safety class is taught to address and make aware the importance of safety when working in areas where there are potential electrical hazards, such as arc flash hazards. According to a 2012 release from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), more than 2,000 people are admitted to intensive care burn units each year as a result of severe arc flash burns they received during an arc flash incident. Fatalities occur at a rate of approximately one per day in the United States, with nonfatal arc flash incidents occurring approximately 5 to 10 times per day. Even these nonfatal arc flash incidents consistently result in many serious burns and injuries requiring weeks to months of intensive care hospital stays and many months of painful rehabilitation. Potential causes of an arc flash can range anywhere from a worker accidentally dropping tools on live electrical busses, bus bars or parts, improper use of equipment, faulty equipment or switches, moisture, and even pest and rodents entering switchgear through openings.
After receiving his graduation certificate, Mickey Anderson said that “this class definitely gave him a higher level of safety and consciousness when working around voltage that is conducive to arc flash”. Ozburn Electric is proud of it’s employees and loves each and everyone of them. Harold Ozburn concluded the interview by saying “Our goal is for every single employee to safely arrive home to their families after work each and every day. Families are important to us and it would behoove us to accommodate a more enjoyable and safe work environment allowing our employees to have an even better family life!”
If you would like more information about Ozburn Electrical Contractors, Inc., call 1-770-784-1618 or send them an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also visit their website at www.OzburnElectrical.com. Ozburn Electrical Contractors proudly serves the Southeastern United States and calls Georgia their home.
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