Maintenance Technology May 2017 - 27

ELECTRICAL SAFETY

Don't Neglect
Electrical
Equipment
Maintenance
Electrical equipment
that is not properly
maintained is not
NFPA 70E compliant
and, therefore,
dangerous to
personnel and
business operations.
James Godfrey, CESCP
Craft Electric &
Maintenance

SINCE THE RELEASE of the 2015 edition
of NFPA 70E, "Standard for Electrical Safety
in the Workplace," there seems to be a
tremendous push by companies to achieve
compliance, and rightfully so. As noted in this
standard, more than 2,000 people each year are
admitted to burn centers with severe arc-flash
burns.
NFPA 70E states that an arc-flash risk assessment shall be performed and shall determine
if an arc-flash hazard exists. Arc flash is the
result of an arcing fault that bridges the air gap
between conductors such as phase to phase,
phase to neutral, or phase to ground. In an
article published in Safety and Health Magazine
(August 2009) the most common cause of
arc-flash accidents is human error. However,
MAY 2017

such things as the accumulation of conductive
dust inside an enclosure and equipment failure,
most likely the result of inadequate maintenance, can also cause these arc-flash events. In
short, if electrical-equipment maintenance is
neglected, something is going to blow. When
that happens, it can be catastrophic.
OSHA CFR 1910.303(b)(1) states that electrical equipment shall be free from recognized
hazards that are likely to cause death or serious
physical harm to employees. Simply put, condition of maintenance must be considered. NFPA
70E states that electrical equipment shall be
maintained in accordance with manufacturer
instructions or industry-consensus standards
to reduce the risk associated with failure.
The term "industry-consensus standards,"

Above. Human error and
improper maintenance,
akin to operating a car
and not checking the oil,
can lead to catastrophic
results to equipment and
personnel involved.

MAINTENANCETECHNOLOGY.COM | 27


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Maintenance Technology May 2017

Maintenance Technology May 2017 - Cover1
Maintenance Technology May 2017 - Cover2
Maintenance Technology May 2017 - 1
Maintenance Technology May 2017 - 2
Maintenance Technology May 2017 - 3
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Maintenance Technology May 2017 - Cover3
Maintenance Technology May 2017 - Cover4
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