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 Post subject: How Many People...
PostPosted: Mon Apr 06, 2009 1:07 pm 
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Do you have any requirements as to the number of people required to be present for electrical activities such as electrical lock out, opening of closing of 480 or 2300V switches or breakers, troubleshooting control circuits on 480V motor starters, etc. I have worked for several companies and have seen many different answers to this question.

In particular, I'm looking for anything in 70E or 1910 that has requirements in this area. I've re-read 70E and did not see anything specific but am not as current on OSHA 1910. Any help and comments would be appreciated.

TxEngr


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 06, 2009 2:59 pm 
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TxEngr wrote:
Do you have any requirements as to the number of people required to be present for electrical activities such as electrical lock out, opening of closing of 480 or 2300V switches or breakers, troubleshooting control circuits on 480V motor starters, etc. I have worked for several companies and have seen many different answers to this question.

In particular, I'm looking for anything in 70E or 1910 that has requirements in this area. I've re-read 70E and did not see anything specific but am not as current on OSHA 1910. Any help and comments would be appreciated.

TxEngr


This is the only reference I know of
OSHA 1910.269 (l)(1)(i) Except as provided in paragraph (l)(1)(ii) of this section, at least two employees
shall be present while the following types of work are being performed:

(l)(1)(i)(A) Installation, removal, or repair of lines that are energized at more than 600 volts,

(l)(1)(i)(B) Installation, removal, or repair of deenergized lines if an employee is exposed to
contact with other parts energized at more than 600 volts,

(l)(1)(i)(C) Installation, removal, or repair of equipment, such as transformers, capacitors,
and regulators, if an employee is exposed to contact with parts energized at more
than 600 volts,

(l)(1)(i)(D) Work involving the use of mechanical equipment, other than insulated aerial lifts,
near parts energized at more than 600 volts, and

(l)(1)(i)(E) Other work that exposes an employee to electrical hazards greater than or equal
to those posed by operations that are specifically listed in paragraphs (l)(1)(i)(A)
through (l)(1)(i)(D) of this section.
(l)(1)(ii) Paragraph (l)(1)(i) of this section does not apply to the following operations:

(l)(1)(ii)(A) Routine switching of circuits, if the employer can demonstrate that conditions at
the site allow this work to be performed safely,

(l)(1)(ii)(B) Work performed with live-line tools if the employee is positioned so that he or she
is neither within reach of nor otherwise exposed to contact with energized parts,
and

(l)(1)(ii)(C) Emergency repairs to the extent necessary to safeguard the general public.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 4:36 am 
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Thanks for the input Zog. That's the reference I was looking for.

I work in a manufacturing facility and at most locations, we've had a rule requiring at least two people present when performing switching or other work on equipment above 600V. I think this was in part just considered a safe practice that was not necessarily a direct requirement. At one location this came about as a result of an arc flash injury to an employee performing a lockout where he did everything right but was still injured due to a mechanical equipment failure. It pointed out the need to have a person who was trained in CPR and electrical rescue techniques present in case the worst happened.

I'd be interested in input from others as to your requirements in this area.

TxEngr


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 5:54 am 
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Another good gem from 1910.269

(b)(1) "Cardiopulmonary resuscitation and first aid training." When employees are
performing work on or associated with exposed lines or equipment energized at 50
volts or more, persons trained in first aid including cardiopulmonary resuscitation
(CPR) shall be available as follows:

(b)(1)(i) For field work involving two or more employees at a work location, at least two
trained persons shall be available. However, only one trained person need be
available if all new employees are trained in first aid, including CPR, within 3
months of their hiring dates.

(b)(1)(ii) For fixed work locations such as generating stations, the number of trained
persons available shall be sufficient to ensure that each employee exposed to
electric shock can be reached within 4 minutes by a trained person. However,
where the existing number of employees is insufficient to meet this requirement
(at a remote substation, for example), all employees at the work location shall be
trained.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 5:56 am 
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Regardless of what the actual requirement is, I think having 2 qualified persons present for any live work to be a very impartant thing. I worked for a company where our most senior and experienced tech was killed working alone on a 125VDC system, he obviously would have been saved had there been someone else there.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 8:31 am 
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Zog - thanks for the additional reference. I fully agree with you about two people present for all energized work. The question has come up about performing work such as lockout, megging, etc. and is under discussion as to the personnel requirements for this type of work. In theory, the person should not be exposed to energized conductors or equipment. However, as I pointed out in my previous post, stuff happens unexpectedly even on these most simple tasks. Again, I look forward to hearing what others in manufacturing are doing in this area.

TxEngr


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 9:19 am 
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TxEngr wrote:
Zog - thanks for the additional reference. I fully agree with you about two people present for all energized work. The question has come up about performing work such as lockout, megging, etc. and is under discussion as to the personnel requirements for this type of work. In theory, the person should not be exposed to energized conductors or equipment. However, as I pointed out in my previous post, stuff happens unexpectedly even on these most simple tasks. Again, I look forward to hearing what others in manufacturing are doing in this area.

TxEngr


The megger test is an interestting one, years ago I wrote OSHA a letter asking about the megger test voltage exceeding 600V and how that impacts OSHA 1910.269 (l)(1)(i) , I recieved a response from them that because the test voltages are >600V the 2 person rules in OSHA 1910.269 (l)(1)(i) needs to be adhered to.

Personally I dont agree with that concept, but that was the response I got from OSHA.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 12:59 pm 
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Zog wrote:
Regardless of what the actual requirement is, I think having 2 qualified persons present for any live work to be a very impartant thing. I worked for a company where our most senior and experienced tech was killed working alone on a 125VDC system, he obviously would have been saved had there been someone else there.


Wise words Zog, lives can been saved as a result of accompaniment by some one who is trained to give assistance in an emergency without being a danger to themselves or others. Acting in an emergency is after the accident is happened however and I would like to put forward that a second person can also assist in accident prevention by securing the working space and also watching the worker's back.


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