Extreme Safety explains the recently renewed AS/NZS 4836:2011 addresses a primary issue of electrical safety. Burns from Arch Flash incidents have been proving to be responsible for more deaths than electrocution when it comes to heavy hazards found in the electrical industry.
An Arch Flash, or Arch Fault, occurs when electric current flows through air gaps between conductors – also known as a short circuit. Arch Flashes are made of four basic elements: Thermal energy (heat), Acoustical Energy (sound), Pressure Wave and debris. Each of these elements can cause serious injury, or even death, to a person. Arc Flash incidents happen through electrical procedures such as racking in a breaker, performing switching, insulation failure and accidents caused by touching a test probe to the wrong surface or slipped (non-insulated) tools.
The renewed AS/NZS 4836:2011 addresses this electrical safety hazard with Arch Flash Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) specifications. The Arc Flash PPE is based on the American Standards rating (NFPA 70-E) which standardises garments with cal/cm2 measurement. The higher a ca/cm2 rating a garment has, the more heat and energy it can protect. The AS/NZS 4836:2011 certain cal/cm2 ratings the certain pieces of PPE that are required. This helps individuals in the electrical industry wear higher ratings of personal protective equipment for higher risks tasks.
The revised AS/NZS 4836:2011 was released in May with new electrical safety equipment and electrical safety practices that should be placed in the workplace immediately. For more information on the AS/NZS 4836:2011 or products that suit the electrical safety requirements in personal protective equipment, contact Extreme Safety.