Distracted Driving

Paul Chamberlain, American Electrical Testing Co., LLC Columns, Fall 2021 Columns, Safety Corner

People are easily distracted in a world filled with more distractions every day. In this day of modern technology, it is easy to get overwhelmed with the number of distracting devices out there, and these devices have encroached upon the driving environment. Cell phones are convenient means to communicate over long distances, but couple them with texting, email, internet, and …

Medium-Voltage Circuit Breaker Condition Analysis and Hazard Awareness Update

Paul Chamberlain and Scott Blizard Columns, Safety Corner, Summer 2021 Columns

When performing condition analysis on medium-voltage circuit breakers located in metal-clad switchgear, it is necessary to be aware of all potential hazards. The person performing the condition analysis must be qualified to perform the task and have a solid understanding of each possible hazard they may encounter as well as ways to minimize the risks. To better understand the hazards …

Portable and Mobile Ladder Safety

Paul Chamberlain, American Electrical Testing Co., LLC Columns, Safety Corner, Spring 2021 Columns

Falls from ladders account for 20% of all fatalities and lost-workday injuries in general industry according to Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) statistics. Ensuring that all ladders meet OSHA and American National Standards Institute (ANSI) standards is critical in mitigating this statistic. OSHA Regulatory Requirements OSHA published an update to its walking-working surface rule (Subpart D) for general industry …

Basic Fall Protection

Paul Chamberlain, American Electrical Testing Co., LLC 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, American Electrical Testing Co., LLC 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, American Electrical Testing Co., LLC 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, American Electrical Testing Co., LLC 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 …