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According to Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI), exposure to electrical current accounted for 2.6% of all workplace fatalities in 2017. Arc flashes are a part of that statistic. This dangerous yet preventable event claims lives, property, and potential from industrial workers and their employers every year.
But what is an arc flash and how does it make industrial work more dangerous? How can arc flash training prevent these deadly occurrences? If your workers are already trained, what are some reasons that workers should be periodically retrained?
An arc flash is one of the products of an arc fault. An arc fault occurs when a high voltage electrical current discharges between two conductors. This most commonly occurs when industrial wiring is not correctly grounded. The discharge produces a large amount of heat that wears down the protective plastic coating around the wires.
When the voltage from an arc fault is high enough, it can cause an explosion. An arc flash is the intense light and heat that results from this explosion. The electrical fire ignites oxygen molecules in the air around the event, which produces a short but violent and widespread flash with temperatures up to 35,000 °F. Anything in the vicinity of an arc flash can be instantly vaporized, set on fire, or otherwise severely burned. Those who are looking directly at the arc flash without proper eye protection can experience long-term vision loss.
Industrial workers are at high risk of encountering arc flashes. In settings with a lot of mechanical equipment, it’s more likely that an arc fault will occur. Workplaces that store and use flammable chemicals also experience greater risk of catastrophic arc flashes.
Controlled arc flashes are often used for lighting and in some welding techniques. The intense heat they produce is uniquely useful for cutting and forming certain metals. The bright light of arc flashes power floodlights, searchlights, and large film projectors.
Many industrial accidents are preventable. Arc flash training gives industrial workers the tools and knowledge they need to reduce deadly missteps.
These are just some of the important lessons industrial workers learn in a safety training seminar. These lessons are designed to reduce harmful arc faults, blasts, and flashes.
Even if your workers have already earned their safety certification, there are some important reasons why they should revisit those lessons periodically.
The 2018 Arc Flash Electrical Safety seminar from NTT Training is based on the NFPA 70E. This hands-on training takes place on your site under the guidance of an experienced instructor. Your workers will learn everything they need to know to reduce the chance of catastrophic accidents involving arc flashes. Contact our representatives today for more information.
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