Not Just a Regulation - Arc Flash Hazard Evaluation by Leedy Electric Saves Lives


Mulberry, FL - Arc faults give off intense heat, as high as 35,000°F. They also produce a bright, intense light that can cause severe eye damage. Pressure waves can be produced by rapidly heating the air, producing a blast of more than 200 lbs. per square inch, which can throw molten metal great distances and throw a worker against objects or walls, with great force. The expanding air can also generate a sound wave that causes temporary or permanent hearing loss.

In 2004, CapSchell Inc. - a Chicago-based research and consulting firm specializing in preventing workplace injuries and deaths - compiled statistics that showed five to ten severe burn injuries a day caused by an arc flash explosion in electric equipment somewhere in the United States. Near-injuries could be many times that. That's why arc-flash hazard evaluation, performed by companies like Leedy Electric in Florida, is so important.

National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) regulations require calculating a "flash protection boundary", defining the area inside which qualified workers must be protected when working. This boundary is a radius around the potential arc point, "within which a person could receive a second-degree burn if an electrical arc flash were to occur," according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 70E standard. Calculating the risk is the first important step to developing an electrical safety program.

The goal of an electrical safety program is to remove the worker from the danger zone or remove or eliminate the intensity of the arc flash. Thus the plan should consider use of long-handled tools to put the worker further from the electrical circuit, infrared windows to allow inspection with cabinets and doors closed, remote racking, current-limiting circuit breakers, and other options. Employee training is another major part of a safety program.

Leedy Electric performs detailed assessments of shock and arc flash risk, creating an overall report on electrical systems and the potential incident energy that might be released at each exposed energized point in the electrical distribution system.
Leedy Electric Corp performs Arc Flash Hazard Analysis throughout Central Florida, including Tampa, Orlando, Brandon and Lakeland, in Polk, Hillsborough, Manatee, Pinellas and Orange Counties.

To learn more about the NFPA 70E - 2012 regulation and how an arc flash hazard analysis from Leedy Electric Corp. can help your business meet these requirements and create the safest environment for your employees, contact John Leedy at (863) 425-2698 or visit Leedy Electric's website at www.leedyelectric.com.

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