Basic Fall Protection

Paul Chamberlain Columns, Safety Corner, Winter 2020 Columns

Fall protection requirements and equipment varies depending upon where the work is being performed. The regulations can be confusing for some employees, so it is up to the manager or safety professional to understand the work, the environment the work is being performed in, and the equipment needed to mitigate the hazard of falling from height. When Is Protection Required? …

Programs, Policies, Manuals, Procedures, and Training

Paul Chamberlain Columns, Fall 2020 Columns, Safety Corner

Many regulatory agencies direct which documents are required to perform a company’s tasks. In some cases, federal and state requirements must be adhered to for the same task or hazard. For example, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) and state environmental agencies, such as the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MA DEP), regulate potential environmental impacts that may …

Limiting Arc Flash Exposure on Low-Voltage Systems

Scott A. Blizard Columns, Safety Corner, Summer 2020 Columns

As the electrical industry addresses arc flash electrical safety concerns, it now acknowledges the high risks associated with what used to be normal maintenance tasks. In many cases, excessively high arc flash incident energy levels require all maintenance to be done with equipment de-energized, despite the fact that it may not always be considered feasible. In addition to the usual …

Communicating Hazards During the Pre-Job Briefing

Paul Chamberlain Columns, Safety Corner, Winter 2019 Columns

Protection from hazards always begins with proper prior planning. An important aid to correctly and thoroughly planning a job includes using a tool known throughout the industry as a pre-job briefing, commonly called a PJB. This tool is called a tailboard or tailboard meeting in construction parlance, but no matter what it is called, PJBs are all designed to do …

Electrical Service Work and Worker Fatigue: Take Care of Yourself!

Ron Widup Columns, Fall 2019 Columns, Safety Corner

Chances are you are in an electrical career you love: Testing, maintaining, installing, commissioning, designing, rebuilding, engineering, improving…and generally making electrical power systems safer and better. But are you doing so with a focus on managing the possible onset of acute or chronic fatigue? We live in a busy world — do more with less; be efficient in your tasks; …

Arc Rated Clothing and Electrical Hazard Footwear

Paul Chamberlain Columns, Safety Corner, Summer 2019 Columns

Everyone wears clothes, at least when out in public. However, not everyone needs to wear clothes specially designed and tested to protect them from hazards they could find in their workplace. If your employees work on or near electric power, generation, transmission, and distribution equipment, specialized clothing is necessary for certain tasks.  OSHA 29 CFR 1910.269 states that employers must …

Sulfur Hexafluoride Gas Hazards

Paul Chamberlain Columns, Safety Corner, Spring 2019 Columns

Sulfur hexafluoride, also known as SF6 gas, is a commonly used and excellent insulator found in many medium to large circuit breakers protecting transmission and distribution equipment. It has been argued that gas-filled breakers are superior to those filled with oil, air, or a vacuum. They operate cooler and with no noise or gas emissions and are considered relatively low …