In a perfect world, we could all work in weather-controlled environments where heat wouldn’t be a factor and comfort could be maximized. Many workplaces however, deal with very high temperatures and heat stress is a year-round risk that requires serious consideration. For many years the standards addressing the prevention of heat stress-related issues went untouched. Recently the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) released an evaluation of the available data on this subject (criteria for a recommended standard), with the goal of setting a new standard. The report; Occupational Exposure to Heat and Hot Environments, contains detailed information to aid employers, managers and workers in managing the occurrence of heat stress.
Category Archives: Lineman Safety
Ineffective or missing fall protection has been OSHA’s most-cited violation every year since 2011, and falls are the leading cause of death in the construction industry. Year after year, fall protection remains a key concern for employers throughout the United States. Not just that, but electrical workers routinely face hazards in the form of high-voltage equipment, dangerous heights, and extreme weather conditions.
OSHA recognizes these dangers and in 2014, updated some of its fall protection regulations to keep employees safe while working at heights. 29 CFR §1926.954 covers PPE requirements, including fall protection, and 29 CFR §1910.269 covers electric power generation, transmission and distribution work. The agency hadn’t updated its rules since 1972 and sought to align them more closely with general industry standards.
In Canada, lightning flashes occur about 2.34 million times a year; with the highest levels of concentration during the summer months.
While most lightning on earth is ground-to-cloud, recent research has identified that the majority of lightning events to tall structures, such as wind turbines, occur in the presents of ground-to-cloud leaders – upward lightning. More importantly, the majority of ground-to-cloud leaders transpire following a sudden change in electric field initiated by either cloud-to-cloud, cloud-to-air or cloud-to-ground discharges.
Since the late 1990’s, the utility grade wind turbine sector has identified lightening events as a significant risk factor. Today, many standards and guidelines (such as IEC 61400-24:2010) exist; however, the majority of lightning-protection-system standards and guidelines utilized by the wind turbine industry do not address upward moving lightning.
How to guard utility personnel from shock hazards
BY JEFF JOWETT, Megger
In the power industry, safety is just as important a function as performance. Safety considerations, parameters, and methods of implementation are an integral part of any electrical system. A most important element is the grounding system. This system performs several functions, not the least of which is safety. Substations are active in fault clearance, and personnel working in and around them, as well as pedestrians passing in the vicinity, need to be protected. When a fault condition occurs, the grounding electrode (grid) must be sufficient to equalize potentials both in and around the substation. Read more