OVERVIEW ON NFPA 70E
WHAT IS IT?
Every day in this country, workers in electrical environments are exposed to hazards that can cause severe and even fatal injuries. This standard was created to help protect the people that work on or near electrical equipment. In one studt, 80% of the severe and fatal injuries related to electricity are due to non-FR clothing igniting and continuing to burn during an arc flash incident.
It is important to note that NFPA70E does not just apply to industrial companies. Within every organization there are a number of maintenance workers, electricians, machine operators, or HVAC personnel who are at risk of an electric arc flash and need FR clothing protection as specified by NFPA 70E. In fact, many industries where employees work on or near electrical equipment are affected by NFPA 70E.
HOW TO COMPLY?
There are several ways you can analyze an arc flash hazard.
One option is to have a hazard assessment done in accordance with 29 CFR 1910.132(d) using computer software or IEEE 1584 arc calculations standards. There are many companies that specialize in performing an arc flash analysis.
Another option is to use the Hazard/Rick Category Classifications of Job Tasks found in NFPA 70E-2009 booklet. Below is a table showing the Hazard Risk Category or HRC along with the minimum 4 cal/cm² for each:
4 cal/cm² or more
8 cal/cm² or more
25 cal/cm² or more
40 cal/cm² or more
A third option is to use the NFPA 70E-2009 booklet's Table H.1 Simplified Two-Category, Flame Resistant Clothing System. This is a simplified approach to ensure adequate PPE for workers working on or around energized parts. The clothing listed suggests the minimum FR requirements of NFPA 70E-2009 Table 130.7 (C) and 103.7 (C) (11).
Once you have determined the Hazard Risk Category, select the appropriate FR garments for the job. Several manufacturers have garments that mee the single and multi-layer needs for all risk categories.
The above provided by National Safety Apparel for your reference.