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 Post subject: Arc Flash Infographic
PostPosted: Mon May 06, 2013 7:40 am 
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I wanted to share this with the group that our Arc Flash manager created.
I hope you find this useful.

[url="http://www.creativesafetysupply.com/content/infographics/arcflash-infographic-web.pdf"]www.creativesafetysupply.com/content/infographics/arcflash-infographic-web.pdf[/url]


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PostPosted: Mon May 13, 2013 8:11 am 

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Please post the source of these statistics.


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PostPosted: Mon May 13, 2013 8:49 am 

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I would like to share this, but also would need to verify the facts first (especially items 2 and 3).


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PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 7:29 am 
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1) Capshell, Inc (Capelli-Schellpfeffer, Inc): http://www.capschell.com/index.htm: a Chicago based research firm that specializes in preventing workplace injuries and deaths.
2) NFPA 70E - 2012 Edition: Annex K3
3) Capelli-Schellpfeffer, Inc (Capshell, Inc) http://www.capschell.com/index.htm: Also, (on page 3) of this document: [url="http://www.ieci.org/media/media/download/748"]www.ieci.org/media/media/download/748[/url]: " Approximately 3000 reported flash burn incidents reported annually along with approximately 350 deaths".
4) NFPA 70E - 2012 Edition: Annex K3
5) NFPA 70E - 2012 Edition: Annex K4
6) NFPA 70E - 2012 Edition: Annex K4
7) NFPA 70E - 2012 Edition: Annex K3
8)NFPA 70E - 2012 Edition: Annex K4 (It actually says 160 dB… I put 140, so that's low)
9) http://literature.rockwellautomation.com/idc/groups/literature/documents/wp/1500-wp001_-en-e.pdf
10) http://www.falconengr.com/arc-flash-facts.htm

I hope this helps.


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PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 9:59 am 

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Not really:

1) The Capshell website address given is only a link to their homepage. No reference to the statistics given.
2) NFPA 70E, Annex K3, surprisingly enough, does not even reference the source of the "2000 people admitted to burn centers" statistic given.
3) Bruce Bowman, PE, the author of the PDF file citing 350 deaths annually does not cite the source of the statistics.

It's generally not a good practice to cite un-referenced statistics, and absolutely not allowed when presented in the context of science.

The Capshell report is often cited and incorrectly cited. The report itself is extremely dated; using the Dept of Labor statistics from in the mid 90's. DOL data / reports generally lump electrical injuries as burns and electrocutions so a tremendous amount of the data is "estimated". Try and find the Capshell report. If anyone has it or a link to it, I'd like to see it.


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PostPosted: Wed May 29, 2013 1:33 pm 
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Cowbell wrote:
Not really:

1) The Capshell website address given is only a link to their homepage. No reference to the statistics given.
2) NFPA 70E, Annex K3, surprisingly enough, does not even reference the source of the "2000 people admitted to burn centers" statistic given.
3) Bruce Bowman, PE, the author of the PDF file citing 350 deaths annually does not cite the source of the statistics.

It's generally not a good practice to cite un-referenced statistics, and absolutely not allowed when presented in the context of science.

The Capshell report is often cited and incorrectly cited. The report itself is extremely dated; using the Dept of Labor statistics from in the mid 90's. DOL data / reports generally lump electrical injuries as burns and electrocutions so a tremendous amount of the data is "estimated". Try and find the Capshell report. If anyone has it or a link to it, I'd like to see it.



Hi Cowbell See below!
1) http://exiscan.com/electrical-safety-arc-flash-statistics about half way down the page Also found on this link http://www.falconengr.com/arc-flash-facts.htm first line.
And according to Bruce Bowman [url="http://www.ieci.org/media/media/download/748"]www.ieci.org/media/media/download/748[/url]
2) http://www.nfpa.org/newsreleasedetails.asp?categoryid=1396&itemid=20113 Read paragraph 3.
(states that 2000 people are treated annually in burn centers)
3) http://www.oberoncompany.com/content/how-many-people-died-arc-last-year as another reference. http://www.nfpa.org/assets/files/pdf/rop/70e-a2008-rop.pdf
http://www.workplace-safety-nc.com/articles/Performing-Elect-Flash-Analysis.html
You'll find many references supporting our infographics but let me know if you need more!


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PostPosted: Thu May 30, 2013 11:45 am 
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TJJ wrote:
Hi Cowbell See below!
2) http://www.nfpa.org/newsreleasedetails.asp?categoryid=1396&itemid=20113 Read paragraph 3.
(states that 2000 people are treated annually in burn centers)
3) http://www.oberoncompany.com/content/how-many-people-died-arc-last-year as another reference. http://www.nfpa.org/assets/files/pdf/rop/70e-a2008-rop.pdf
http://www.workplace-safety-nc.com/articles/Performing-Elect-Flash-Analysis.html
You'll find many references supporting our infographics but let me know if you need more!


2) That statistic was released in 2004
3) That statistic was released in 2008

I have been trying to get more current statistics for the arc flash awareness power points I am doing for our company. Looking at ESFI, in 2006 there were 300 electrical fatalities for the year. Fatalities have been in steady decline since then. The figure for 2009 was 163.

While I certainly agree that arc flash presents a clear and present danger, we should be responsible in presenting the newest and most accurate statistics. What the data shows is that using proper PPE and teaching workers to be aware and respectful of the danger of arc flash has significantly reduced the injuries and deaths directly related to arc flash.


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PostPosted: Thu May 30, 2013 12:17 pm 
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Thank you Larry, We'll update our infographics as soon as we can get more concrete reference for current data.
But as you already know, new current data is very difficult to acquire.

"The figure for 2009 was 163" - This is what's been reported from employers. What's not been clearly reported and only surveyed is deaths involving copper theft. http://www.esfi.org/index.cfm/cd/FAP/cdid/10983/pid/10272 For year 2009 survey.


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PostPosted: Thu May 30, 2013 12:51 pm 
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Yes, I know. I have been looking through several articles and ESFI’s 28 pages of statistics.

It seems much of the statistics people quote are either old or somewhat skewed.
PPE manufacturers seem to use older statistics that somewhat over emphasize the danger – likely intended to scare employers into buying what they really NEED to buy and not focusing on the cost of compliance.

One article I read was from the perspective of possible fines and litigation – likely meant to remind employers of negative consequences of not complying with the standards.

The Exiscan article says that the majority of injuries are burns and not classed as electrocutions. Though PaulEngr pointed out in another thread that the ESFI actually parsed the reports. According to the ESFI data over a little more than a decade, the incident rates have declined by 60%. That is a significant improvement.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 7:09 am 

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Have you seen the commercial for the insurance company that uses the premise "If it's on the the Internet, it must be true"?

[media=youtube]uOzAgpxg5wE[/media]

I have still not seen the source of these statistics. The Capshell report is what all of these websites, all of which involved in the business of Arc Flash for profit ($$$$), including yours, use without merit. As I said before, even NFPA 70E does not not cite the source of the statistic regarding "2000 injuries per day". Don't just give me another website that says that again, show me source (ie the study) that produces those statistics.

I am not, by any means, attempting to reduce the importance of arc flash, arc flash studies or PPE. I just have a problem when companies use these types of statistics without regard to the source or veracity of the information. Fear Mongering is the term that come to mind.

It's on the internet so it must be true.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 8:12 am 
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Cowbell wrote:
Have you seen the commercial for the insurance company that uses the premise "If it's on the the Internet, it must be true"?

I have still not seen the source of these statistics. The Capshell report is what all of these websites, all of which involved in the business of Arc Flash for profit ($$$$), including yours, use without merit. As I said before, even NFPA 70E does not not cite the source of the statistic regarding "2000 injuries per day". Don't just give me another website that says that again, show me source (ie the study) that produces those statistics.

I am not, by any means, attempting to reduce the importance of arc flash, arc flash studies or PPE. I just have a problem when companies use these types of statistics without regard to the source or veracity of the information. Fear Mongering is the term that come to mind.

It's on the internet so it must be true.


I agree with you. All the data I am finding that has links to actual study data, even though it is still a bit older data (as in a couple years older), shows a significantly lower statistics. The data being quoted was likely current 5 - 10 years ago.

Maybe the current statistics are higher than what I have found because they are parsed as fall, crush, concussive, or burn statistics instead of electrical statistics. I can't say for sure because I can't see the data.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 06, 2013 8:06 am 
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I'm really glad my infographics file triggered this discussion.
My colleagues wanted to chime in on your replies.
http://blog.creativesafetysupply.com/so-heres-how-today-started-out/

My main concern is, why is it so difficult for us to find this current and relevant data? Has the number of Arc Flash related deaths and injuries really decreased that much or is someone not doing their job by reporting the incidences to OSHA?


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 06, 2013 11:17 am 
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TJJ wrote:
I'm really glad my infographics file triggered this discussion.
My colleagues wanted to chime in on your replies.
http://blog.creativesafetysupply.com/so-heres-how-today-started-out/

My main concern is, why is it so difficult for us to find this current and relevant data? Has the number of Arc Flash related deaths and injuries really decreased that much or is someone not doing their job by reporting the incidences to OSHA?


I don't think it is lack of reporting. I think it may be the way the causes are parsed.

If you are blown off a scaffold by an arc blast and fall 30 feet to your death, is it the arc flash that killed you or the fall? Is OSHA going to lump that one statistic in with falls or electrical? The same question can be posed of a severe burn injury caused by an arc flash.

In the grand scheme of things does it really matter what the percentages and statistics are? I understand it is good to be able to assess what is an acceptable risk, and I certainly can appreciate that the numbers are coming down.

But does that mean it is any safer to do certain tasks? I do not think it does at all. I think that perhaps it means is that we are being safer in accomplishing those tasks. Or perhaps it means we are being more diligent in wearing the proper PPE.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 6:40 am 
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I think accurate and up-to-date statistics are important; it is difficult to manage something you can’t measure. I find it disappointing that Annex K in the NFPA-70E says, “each year more than 2000 people are admitted to burn centers with severe arc flash burns” and this statistic never changes with newer revisions. It would be nice to see the impact of arc flash studies affecting how we choose to do work and wear PPE.

However even if all arc flash incidents were logged in a special database for tracking purposes, not all reductions in electrical arc flash incidents can be attributed to the recent focus on arc flash hazards. This focus has also caused a renewed emphasis on electrical safety in general. I know many of the changes I’ve seen over the past decade in how we do work have always been OSHA requirements that were just never really strictly followed such as the requirements for de-energization, justification of live work, live-dead-live testing, insulated tools and PPE for shock protection.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 8:05 am 
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Of course, I agree that statistics certainly tell a story, and you do need something measurable to deal with.

What I am saying is that arc flash incidents are going to happen. In my 37-year career (so far) as an avionic systems repairman, instrument technician, industrial electrician, and field service engineer, I have been within the Restricted Approach Boundary when an arc flash incident occurred on 2 separate occasions. Both times I was lucky and escaped unscathed. Still, overall I would consider the odds of it happenning to me specifically to be rare.

That being said, getting down to the reality of working within the Arc Flash Boundary. Since there is a possibility of it happenning to me, I would certainly rather be protected by wearing the proper PPE than not.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 9:35 am 
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Was wanting to know how everyone handles disconnect labeling. Since mostly the only thing you can do to a disconnect is change fuses or replace it if they needed to be labeled at all. I wanted to know also if there is a minimum size disconnect that didn`t need to be labeled. And the ones that are labeled if they need to be mark with a Cat 2 for confirming that powers is off.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 18, 2013 7:57 am 
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Where there is money to be made there will be always unscrupulous carpet-baggers who will ride the wagon to the hilt. They can often be found at the periphery of Government or other unaccountable establishment and agencies and they create volumes of overwhelming documents whose accuracy and validity mere working mortals can never fathom to validate.

Arc-flash was always there. Physics just don’t appear from one day to another. Related deaths were always there. Electricity, not unlike many other business, have inherent dangers associated with it. Each business eventually forced to deal with the dangers to bring it under acceptable control levels. Some businesses eventually driven out of the market by alternatives, such as lead in paint of cable insulation or sewer piping. Electricity has no such an alternative.

Is it the general opinion of the professional community – mostly privately held opinion because it is not PC – that arc-flash protection is way overblown? Of course it is. We all see how the calculated values of the various models fail to hold up in real life experiments sometimes in the order of magnitude. Even the statistics claim that 2 out of 3 incidents are simple human stupidity? Why do we accept substandard performance and punish the rest of the industry and its professionals with task taking 10 times longer than they supposed to? Why do we burden the task performers with reduced dexterity, visibility and induced heat stress on top of the increased duration that actually increases the likeliness of an incident?


Why, why, why…..

Usually a wise man when finds themselves in a hole, will stop digging.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 14, 2014 12:31 am 

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An arc flash infographics shows is distinctly different from the arc blast, is part of an arc fault, a type of electrical explosion that results from a low-impedance connection to ground or another voltage phase in an electrical system.And this is shown on infographics which is called as arc flash infographics..




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PostPosted: Mon Mar 10, 2014 7:05 pm 

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Thank you LaszloZW. Not that in any way do I criticize the efforts to save lives by doing Arc Flash studies and providing effective PPE for specific tasks. Unfortunately, every time you take a short cut through the woods, you give the wolf another opportunity.

I would like to see the root cause analysis studies that show what short cuts people took that resulted in arc flash incidents. I would venture to guess that a large number of incidents are the result of poorly chosen short cuts taken in doing the work involved. I call this "hopping the fence" after observing the practice at one organization I used to work for.

They had a rather large and dangerous machine to do friction welding of 6" diameter steel studs. It had a "safety fence" around the machine with switches to disable the machine on every gated entry. Unfortunately, the material feed tables and conveyors would sometimes jam up or the lathe would toss a piece of dross in the wrong direction. Disabling the machine by opening a gate would then require that all the materials lined up for processing be cleared, lots of forklift work, hours of downtime... you get the picture I hope. So the operator would just hop the fence, fix the problem with a quick thump here or there, hop back out and go back to reading his magazine while waiting for the batch to be completed.

When "safety" gets in the way, laziness will invariably take over and short cuts which are perhaps even more dangerous will be taken. Right now we are in the "honeymoon" phase of the Arc Flash initiative. Awareness is being improved, techniques are being developed, mitigations are being practiced... Once the glow of all the warm fuzzies that we have really done something to improve worker safety have worn off, WATCH OUT for the "hopping the fence" behaviour to kick back in.

Maybe it's like the first few months of the 55 MPH national speed limit. One possible theory is that traffic accidents initially decreased as a result of drivers paying more attention to complying with the law or avoiding enforcement. But then drivers adapted and rather poorly, and the death rate per million miles driven rose back up to pre 55 MPH levels. For a fascinating report on this subject, http://object.cato.org/sites/cato.org/files/pubs/pdf/pa346.pdf

In the end, best practices companies will have realized that it is far more cost effective to build safer equipment and replace the older more dangerous designs and save their employees from the draconian bomb suit for all jobs mentality that seems to be popular today.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 10, 2014 7:13 pm 

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Sorry for the editorial... I am annoyed because one place I work refuses to do the arc flash studies because they deem they are not mandatory under the current legislation for their jurisdiction. On the plus side, I only got a minor rebuke for spending money on an arc flash suit.


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