The electric arc (also known as arc-flash) is the result of an electrical short circuit carried by air. It is a violent discharge of thermal energy from an electrical source that, depending on the severity of the incident, can cause burns and serious or even irreversible injuries.
Arc Flash Hazards (ARC FLASH) is a major concern when working in installations that exceed 220 volts rated voltage.
THE THERMAL ENERGY RELEASED BY AN ELECTRIC ARC – It is expressed in calories per cm², 1 cal / cm² is equivalent to exposing a finger to the flame of a lighter for one second, – An energy of only 1.2 cal / cm² causes second degree burns in human skin, –
Conventional work clothing (NOT FIRE-SAFE) burn from 2 calories of energy. Thermal radiation can reach 19,000 ° C.
How to protect yourself from the electric arc?
1: Know the effects of the electric arc, the safety limitations, and the working conditions that carry this risk.
2: Identify operations and locations that pose a potential arc flash hazard.
3: Analyze the risk, knowing that the electric arc resistance value is defined according to the international standard NFPA 70 E, ASTM, or CEI 61482-1-1 (free arc test)
and that the protective equipment for this type of irrigation system, use materials evaluated in * ATPV = Arc Thermal Performance Value, which describes the behavior of manufacturing materials when exposed to an electric arc, expressed in cal / cm2 (calories per square centimeter). The higher the value of cal / cm2, the greater the protection.
Some of the risks of arching a fault are the following :
Heat : Fatal burns can occur when the victim is several feet from the arc. Serious burns are common at a distance of 3 meters.
Objects : The extension of the arc causes the fall of small metallic objects at high pressure. The explosion can penetrate the body.
Pressure : The pressure wave from the explosion can launch workers across the room, knocking them out. Chest pressure can be greater than 2000 lb2 ft.
Clothes : Clothes are burned several meters away. The clothing area can be burned more severely than exposed skin.
Hearing loss : by noise explosion. Sound can have a magnitude of up to 140 dB at a distance of 60.96 cm from the arc.
Arc Flash Impacts Due to arc burns, the skin can require years of drug treatment and rehabilitation. The victim may not return to work or may not have the same quality of life.
Some of the direct costs are:
Treatment can exceed $ 1,00,00 per case.
Fee litigation, Production losses