Electrical engineers and other professionals who work with electrical equipment must understand the dangers of arc flashes and how to decrease their occurrences and effects. Organizations like OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) and the NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) mandate that electrical workers use certain safety tools while on the job. Learn more about the arc flash mitigation techniques used by professionals in the electrical sector.
If workers need to perform maintenance on any electrical equipment, they can eliminate an arc flash hazard right away by de-energizing the apparatus they’re working on. When electrical current can’t flow, it can’t produce that dangerous explosion.
For electrical equipment that cannot be de-energized, electrical professionals can install sensors that allow the equipment to be operated remotely. While this practice does not eliminate the chances of an arc flash occurring, it helps minimize the risk of injury to personnel by keeping them a safe distance away.
When setting up electrical equipment for remote operations, install a remote racking system that allows circuit breakers to be removed and re-installed from a distance.
Arc Flash Reduction Maintenance System (ARMS)
The implementation of an ARMS mitigates arc flash risks by shortening the duration of the flash itself. The ARMS bypasses your trip circuit’s time delays, allowing the flash to happen instantaneously.
Keep in mind that ARMS circuits must be enabled and disabled manually. Enable it when you start work on a piece of electrical equipment, and disable it when the work is done.
Before you begin working on equipment that can produce an arc flash, deploy an arc flash mitigation solution by enlisting an engineer to analyze your equipment. The analyst will measure how much energy an arc flash could release at several points along your power chain. They will also recommend that you clearly mark arc flash hazard areas and ensure that employees are wearing adequate protective equipment.
When it comes to arc flash mitigation techniques, the proper safety tools and procedures will minimize risk of injury from arc flashes. If a flash is all but inevitable, put systems in place to shorten its duration and keep employees as far from the risk as possible.
Need an engineer to perform a hazard analysis on your power chain? Dreiym Engineering’s dedicated team of electrical experts can identify potential dangers and advise you on mitigation solutions.