Safety is a concern for everyone.
Everywhere we go and everything we do, whether it’s in our home, at work or in our neighborhood, there is a measure of safety that has been considered, whether we realize it or not, to keep us safe.
Naturally, safety is a major topic in our industry. As we attend to our daily jobs to keep our equipment running properly, we are faced with a wide array of tasks ranging from simple repairs that require little thought to issues that need extensive troubleshooting on energized equipment that is in operation. In the latter case, the safety burden begins with the employer providing an electrical safety program that includes personal protection equipment and ends with the employee that ultimately performs these tasks. Our goal, when designing our Vilter Engineered Motor Starter, is to consider the safety measures that are required per the National Fire Protection Association 70E Standard for Electrical Safety in the Workplace (NFPA 70E) to help the employer with their electrical safety requirements and especially to keep employees safer.
That is why we’re participating in the 2013 Electrical Safety Workshop organized by IAS IEEE (Industry Application Society of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers). Not only do we want to share our ideas but we want to learn from experts across multiple disciplines to help promote and change the electrical safety culture in our country.
The white paper I wrote for this event focuses on designing safer and smarter electrical equipment in the spirit of NFPA 70E. I will be presenting my paper at the poster presentation on March 14. An abstract of the paper can be read here: NFPA 70E – Reducing and Eliminating Arc Flash Hazards through Electrical Equipment Design Considerations.
We hope to see you there – be safe!
Dennis W. Doody
Emerson Climate Technologies
Electricity…Electricity…Electricity…we cannot live without it! Electricity is so embedded into the fabric of our lives that we often take it for granted without notice of its significance. Before you go to bed tonight walk through your living quarters and take notice of the green, red and orange LEDs peering at you from dark corners – electricity busy at work while we sleep.
In the refrigeration world, our wonderful compressors are not very useful unless they have a reliable and safe supply of electricity. For the most part, we rely on our local electrical utility to provide us with a reliable, clean and secure electricity supply. As far as safety, in the United States, we have codes, standards and certifications such as National Fire Protection Association 70 National Electric Code, National Fire Protection Association 70E Standard for Electrical Safety in the Workplace, Occupational Safety and Health Act and Underwriters Laboratories that protect us from the potential dangers of electricity such as shock, fire and explosions from an arc flash event.
While it is true that energized components and conductors are usually safely mounted in enclosures, there are times when those of us who work in the industrial and commercial refrigeration industry need to interact with, and actually touch energized components with meters and tools when trying to troubleshoot or repair equipment. This can be a very dangerous task and is a primary concern of ours when designing and building electrical equipment.
So, we would like to hear from you – what are you doing in the workplace to safely handle electrical hazards? Do you understand NFPA 70E? Are you complying with NFPA 70E?
Vilter Manufacturing will have a booth at the upcoming Refrigeration Engineers and Technicians Association 2012 National Conference in San Antonio, Texas from November 5-9. We will have our NFPA 70E inspired motor starter with us and I will be presenting a short piece on our motor starter on Friday morning November 9th. For more details, visit http://www.reta.com/convention/2012/index.html.
I hope to hear from you soon – stay safe!
Project Manager – Motor Starters
Vilter Manufacturing – Emerson Climate Technologies