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Environmental Health & Safety

Electrical Safety Program

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Electrical Safety Program

  2. These items and their reasoning must be reviewed with all participants in the program.

    1. General Requirements
      1. Employees working in areas where electrical hazards are present shall be provided with, and shall use, protective equipment (Arc Flash Gear) that is designed and constructed for the specific body part to be protected and for the work to be performed.
      2. Such equipment shall include 11 calorie and 40 calorie rated Arc Flash apparel only, eye protection, head protection, hearing protection, hand protection, insulated footwear, and face shields as necessay. The U of R is not responsible for providing under layers, but the employee must wear compatible under layers made of white cotton. See Appendix E.
      3. The employee to whom it is issued shall maintain all protective equipment in a safe, reliable condition. Employees shall store arc flash gear in the special storage bag provided.
      4. Any additional electrical PPE purchased by the employees must be approved by the supervisor.
      5. Employees shall wear nonconductive protection for the head, eyes, face, neck, chin, hand and arms whenever there is danger of contact with live parts or from injury from exposure to electric arcs or flashes or from flying objects resulting from an electrical explosion.
      6. Employees shall wear hearing protection whenever performing live work.
      7. Heavy-duty electrically rated boots or dielectric overshoes (per ANSI Z41 and ASTM F2413-05) provide some arc flash protection to the feet and shall be used for all tasks involving energized electric. Insulated soles shall not be used as primary electrical protection.
      8. Face shields with an arc rating will be used for electrical work.  Safety glasses or goggles must always be worn underneath face shields.
      9. Additional illumination may be needed when using tinted face shields as protection during electrical work.
    2. Flash Protection Boundary
      1. Personal protective equipment shall be provided to and used by all qualified employees working within the “Flash Protection Boundary”.
      2. For systems that are above 600 volts, the Flash Protection Boundary shall be determined through engineering analysis. Arc Flash consulting firms will be employed as necessary.
      3. For systems that are 600 volts or less, there are three methods for determining the Flash Protection Boundary. The preferred order of which method shall be utilized is:
        1. Incident Energy Analysis method, as part of the overall arc flash study. The analysis shall be performed by a qualified perons. Arc Flash consulting firms may also be employed.
        2. The PPE category method, utilizing the tables in Appendix E
        3. Calculating the boundary using the formula in Appendix C.
      4. The specific protective equipment to be worn within the Flash Protection Boundary shall be determined by using Incident Energy Analysis Method and selecting the PPE with NFPA Table 130.5, shown in Appendix D
        1. Complete a detailed flash hazard analysis utilizing an engineering consulting firm or under engineering supervision that determines the incident exposure energy of each employee.  Appropriate protective clothing will then be selected based on the calculated exposure level.
        2. It is the Project Manager's responsibility to ensure all new buildings and installations have an arc flash study performed and documented. The project manager is also responsible for ensuring all installations are below 40 calories, anything greater than that will need approval form the Senior Associate Vice President of University Facilities and Services
        3. The detailed arc flash hazard analysis shall be reviewed and performed every 5 years, or earlier whenever a major system change occurs.
      5. As an alternative secondary method, for systems that are 600 volts or less, the specific protective equipment to be worn within the Flash Protection Boundary can be determined by using the Arc Flash PPE Category Method using NFPA Tables 130.7(C)(15)(a), 130.7(C)(15)(b), 130.7(C)(15)(c), shown in Appendix E. This method can only be used if the specific task to be performed appears in the tables and the system meets the listed criteria for short circuit current magnitude and fault clearing times.
        1. To utilize Table 130.7(C)(15)(a), fault current at the equipment must be known. To determine the fault current without a systme model/engineering analysis, the fault current can be calculated at the transformer secondary lugs and assumed as the fault current for the whole system. This can be calculated using the calculation in Appendix E.
        2. The Arc Flash PPE Category table shall be reviewed and reutilized every 5 years, or earlier whenever a major system change occurs.
      6. University work units shall develop and maintain a listing of the specific PPE requirements for each energized electrical task conducted by their employees using the form found in Appendix F of this document.
    3. Arc Flash Labels
      1. Arc Flash Labels shall be posted at all major electrical equipment that are likely to require examinations, adjustment, servicing, maintenance or operation while energized
      2. Arc Flash labels shall be created in accordance with the example labels in Appendix M. Examples are shown for both the Incident Energy Analysis and PPE Category Methods.
    4. Flame-Resistant (FR) Apparel & Under layers
      1. FR apparel shall always be a minimum of 12 calorie rated and rated for 40 calories when required for arc flash levels.
      2. FR apparel (See Appendix E of this document) shall be visually inspected before each use.  FR apparel that is contaminated or damaged shall not be used.  Protective items that become contaminated with grease, oil, flammable liquids, or combustible liquids shall not be used.
      3. The garment manufacturer’s instructions for care and maintenance of FR apparel shall be followed.
      4. When FR apparel is worn to protect an employee, it shall cover all ignitable clothing and allow for movement and visibility.
      5. FR apparel must cover potentially exposed areas as completely as possible.  FR shirtsleeves must be fastened and FR shirts/jackets must be closed at the neck.
      6. Non-melting, flammable garments (i.e. cotton, wool, rayon, silk, or blends of these materials) should be used as under layers beneath FR apparel.
      7. Fibers such as acetate, nylon, polyester, polypropylene, and spandex shall not be permitted in fabric under layers next to the skin.
      8. Garments containing metal or other conductive materials shall not be worn.
      9. FR garments worn as outer layers over FR apparel (i.e. jackets or rainwear) must also be made from FR material.
    5. Rubber Insulating Equipment
      1. Rubber insulating equipment includes protective devices such as gloves, sleeves, blankets, and matting.
      2. Insulating equipment must be inspected for damage before each day’s use and immediately following any incident that could have caused damage.
      3. Where the insulating capability of protective equipment is subject to damage during use, an outer covering of leather or other appropriate material shall protect the insulating material.
      4. Rubber insulating equipment must be tested according to the schedule contained in Appendix G.
      5. Rubber insulating equipment must be stored in an area protected from light, temperature extremes, excessive humidity, ozone, and other substances and conditions that may cause damage.
      6. No repairs to rubber insulating equipment shall be attempted.
    6. Electrically insulated tools and materials (provided by the University)
      1. Only insulated tools and equipment shall be used within the Limited Approach Boundary of exposed energized parts.
      2. Insulated tools shall be rated for the voltages on which they are used.
      3. Insulated tools shall be designed and constructed for the environment to which they are exposed and the manner in which they are used.
      4. Fuse or fuse holder handling equipment, insulated for the circuit voltage, shall be used to remove or install a fuse.
      5. Ropes and hand lines used near exposed energized parts shall be nonconductive.
      6. Portable ladders shall be nonconductive.
    7. Test and Inspection Protocol for PPE Equipment
      1. All PPE clothing and equipment must be visually inspected by the user before each use and taken out of service if any defects are noted.
      2. A physical inspection and air test must be performed on rubber insulating glovers before each use. Each person in the program must be trained in this by their supervisor.
      3. Insulating equipment found to have defects that might affect its insulating properties must be removed from service until testing indicates that it is acceptable for continued use.
      4. Equipment, tools, and clothing will be subjected to annual inspections.  These inspections shall be documented on the Test and Inspection Protocol standard form used at the University.  See Appendix K.
    1. Barricades shall be used in conjunction with safety signs to prevent or limit access to work areas containing live parts.  If a barricade must be used within the limited approach boundary it must be non-conductive.  Barricades shall be placed no closer than the Limited Approach Boundary.
    2. If signs and barricades do not provide sufficient protection, an attendant will be assigned to warn and protect pedestrians.  The primary duty of the attendant shall be to keep unqualified persons out of the work area where an electrical hazard exists.  The attendant shall remain in the area as long as there is a potential exposure to electrical hazards. The attendant shall remain outside of the Limited Approach Boundary.
    1. Contractof safety programs must at minimum meet the requirements of the University Electrical Safety program.
    2. Contractors will be required to comply with applicable University, Federal, State and local environmental safety and health regulations.
    3. Contractors are required to meet the training requirements of NFPA 70E prior to beginning work at the University of Rochester and provide documentation to show compliance.
    4. Contractors are required to submit copies of their Safety Program to PPM upon request.

Contact EH&S at (585) 275-3241 or e-mail EH&S Questions.

This page last updated 6/18/2020. Disclaimer.