Electrical hazards at the workplace range from mild electric shocks and burns to more severe injuries and health complications that result from brief yet powerful arc flashes. Electric arc flashes and blasts are capable of causing severe burns. The extreme heat and acoustic waves can damage vision, hearing or even trigger concussion and memory loss. The impact of such blasts can prove fatal, especially when workers are thrown off elevated work platforms, scaffoldings or ladders.
Employers can ensure safety of workers, who are prone to electric arc risks as a part of the their daily jobs, by opting for suitable personal protective equipment, arc-rated flame retardant clothing, accessories and gear after a thorough assessment of the hazard and its severity.
There are different alternatives and approaches that can help ensure electric arc protection. Having workers suited up for the entire shift in arc rated clothing that offers maximum protection, though ideal, does not seem quite practical, unless the job so demands.
Layered protection has by far proved to be a more pocket-friendly and effective solution, especially where workers are expected to face electrical hazards of different categories or severities during the course of their daily shifts. Electric arcs may be just one of the many risks these workers face that too when on specific jobs in hazard risk categories (HRC) of 2 to 4.