According to the NFPA 70E, Arc Flash is a “dangerous condition associated with the release of energy caused by an electric arc.” It is measured in terms of arc flash incident energy E (AFIE), which is used to determine the level of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
An arc flash is the light and heat produced from an electric arc supplied with sufficient electrical energy to cause substantial damage, harm, fire, or injury. This can occur near high power electrical equipment such as transformers, service entrance switch gear or generators.
The first step to protection conduct an Arc Flash Hazard Analysis which defines the procedures and limits the damage of electrical arcs on personnel and, by measuring the released energy, defines the risk and determines the relevant level of the PPE required.
|HRC* 0 – 0 cal/cm2 ; 0 J/cm2:||Non-melting, flammable materials (i.e untreated cotton, rayon, wool, silk or blends of these materials) with a minimum fabric weight of 150g/m2|
|HRC* 1 – 4 cal/cm2 ; 16,74 J/cm2:||Arc Rated Flame Retardant shirt, Flame Retardant trousers or Flame Retardant coverall|
|HRC* 2 – 8 cal/cm2 ; 33,47 J/cm2:||Arc Rated Flame Retardant shirt, Flame Retardant trousers or Flame Retardant coverall|
|HRC* 3 – 25 cal/cm2 ; 104,6 J/cm2:||Arc Rated Flame Retardant shirt and FR trousers or FR coverall, and arc flash suit selected so that the system arc rating complies with the required minimum|
|HRC* 4 – 40 cal/cm2 ; 167,36 J/cm2:||Arc Rated Flame Retardant shirt and FR trousers or FR coverall, and arc flash suit selected so that the system arc rating complies with the required mini|
*HRC: Harzard/Risk Category
Selecting the correct level of Arc Protection Equipment (APE) is made easy from this table however there are a few questions to ask your APE supplier:
- Is the garment compliant with SANS 724:2010, NFPA 70E:2009 and SANS 984/IEEE Std 1584?
- Can they send you the relevant certifications?
- Does the garment meet your required HRC level?
- Has the garment been tested? (not the fabric – very important)
- If so, can they send you the test reports that include photos?
It’s important to note that where more than 40cal/cm2 APE is required it is not recommended unless all other means of reducing the risk of exposure has been investigated.
The Arc PPE you use really is your last line of defence, and following the above steps ensures that you are doing the best you possibly can to minimise injuries as a result of an arc flash incident.
Information supplied by: Dromex Personal Protective Equipment.
There are so many reasons why a bicycle can be considered the best form of transport (in our humble opinion). It is not only good for our health and bank accounts (did you know that a bicycle is 20 times cheaper to maintain than the average car?), but it is good for the environment as well.
There is now no wonder why there are twice as many bicycles in the world than cars! It is believed that the world manufactures more or less 100 million of them each year, that means that currently over 1 billion bicycles are being used all over the world!
In terms of the environment, it is understood that bicycles save over 238 million gallons of fuel every year. We can also fit about 15 bicycles in the same space that 1 car occupies.
But the best part about riding a bicycle is that it makes us look cool! This is why we were happy to get involved in sponsoring some new bicycles for the staff at Melkbosstrand Private School (MPS). Mr Jaco Smit, the school principle, is quoted as saying;
“You can be sure that this kind gesture will have a positive impact on their lives. They can now drive to and from school instead of walking. For some of them it is their first bicycle ever!”
Now isn’t that cool?