Proud Members. Shared Mission.
With our commitment to relentless protection comes a commitment to doing our part to help ensure worker safety by pushing for standards and oversight. Nowhere is this obligation more essential than the world of NFPA® 70E, and in the lives of those Americans working near energized equipment. It is our pleasure to announce Bulwark Protection is now a proud member of the Partnership for Electrical Safety.
What is The Partnership for Electrical Safety?
The Partnership for Electrical Safety firmly believes that every American working on or near energized electrical equipment deserves equal protection from arc flash, including the appropriate arc rated clothing and associated PPE. We believe that the PPE requirements of NFPA 70E®: Standard for Electrical Safety in the Workplace® provide the appropriate best practices to ensure worker safety and should be broadly adopted for substantially all live or potentially live electrical work in the United States. We seek to educate those at risk and to make plain to relevant oversight entities the need for use of personal protective equipment (PPE) when doing electrical work, and the extreme human and financial costs of non-compliance.
What is the vision of The Partnership for Electrical Safety?
We intend to help ensure all Americans have access to and properly wear the appropriate arc rated clothing and associated PPE. We accomplish this through visually compelling and impactful direst education in person and online, and by engaging standards and rulemaking entities such as OSHA, NESC® and others. We help these entities understand the magnitude of the hazard as well as the societal cost of not wearing appropriate PPE, to encourage them to apply arc flash safety regulations equally to all workers.
What is NFPA 70E® - Standard for Electrical Safety in the Workplace®?
National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 70E®, Standard for Electrical Safety in the Workplace®, 2018 Edition addresses electrical safety related work practices, safety-related maintenance requirements and other administrative controls for activities such as inspection, operation, repair or demolition of electric conductors, electric equipment, signaling and communications conductors and equipment, and raceways. It also includes safe work practices for employees performing other work activities that can expose them to electrical hazards such as installation of conductors and equipment or installations used by the electrical utility that are not an integral part of a generating plant, substation or control center.
What do employers need to know about NFPA 70E®?
NFPA 70E® is a national consensus standard that establishes “best practices” for protection from electric arcs. Employers must conduct a shock risk assessment to establish limited and restricted approach boundaries and an arc flash risk assessment to establish an arc flash boundary. Under NFPA 70E® employers must document and implement an overall electrical safety program that includes hazard/risk evaluation and job briefing procedures. This program must be audited annually. If energized electrical conductor or circuit parts operating at 50 volts or more are not placed in an electrically safe work condition, written authorization by work permit is required. Employees must be qualified to do the work and trained to understand the specific hazards and potential injury associated with electrical energy. Employees exposed to shock hazards must be retrained annually in cardiopulmonary resuscitation. When work will be performed within the arc flash protection boundary, the employer must document the incident energy exposure in calories per square centimeter. Section 130.7 (C)(7) states arc-rated clothing must conform to applicable state, federal, or local codes and standards, and appropriate PPE must be worn either based on the incident energy determined for the specific task or by using separate tables in NFPA 70E to determine the need for arc-rated PPE and the arc flash PPE category. In table 130.7(C)(14) the ASTM F1506 Standard Performance Specification is noted as an example of a standard that contains information on the care, inspection, testing, and manufacturing of appropriate PPE.
Who is covered by NFPA 70E®?
Employees during activities such as installation, operation, maintenance and demolition of exposed energized electrical conductors or circuit parts. Research shows that approximately 5% of the employees in any operation work as electricians, maintenance or other categories of work covered by this standard.
Does OSHA enforce NFPA 70E®?
OSHA believes that the NFPA 70E® standard offers useful guidance for employers and employees attempting to control electrical hazards, but OSHA has not conducted a rulemaking and therefore does not “enforce” NFPA 70E®. OSHA does use consensus standards, such as NFPA 70E® as evidence of hazard recognition in evaluating General Duty Clause violations.
To learn more, please visit the Partnership for Electrical Safety website.