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Working with electricity can be risky business, but it doesn't need to put you in harm's way. Companies need to make sure their staff knows how to work with high voltage in case an arc flash incident occurs. Risks can be minimized or eliminated if companies and workers abide by the necessary safety measures.
Although there are many ways in which electricity is harmful, never underestimate the possibility for arc flash. When one occurs, electric current is not traveling along its intended path. It moves to ground either through the air or from one conductor to another.
An arc flash happens very quickly and the possibility of human injury is very real. The temperatures can be three times hotter than the surface of the sun. The noise from an arc flash event is as loud as a shotgun. There's also the danger of flying metal shrapnel and fall hazards for workers above ground level.
Some causes are traced to human error. Some of the more common problems that may lead to this problem include corrosion, dropped tools, equipment failure, or dust. Reducing the possibility and limiting the associated injuries require planning and strict adherence to rules established by OSHA.
Arc flash safety tips
Do not underestimate arc flash. Determining the areas in a facility where it might occur and taking the necessary steps to protect employees provides a safer working environment for everyone.
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