Offutt AFB, NE – Two workers were injured at Offutt Air Force Base last week in an arc flash accident. One worker was an Air Force civilian employee from the 55th Civil Engineering Squadron, and the other was from the Omaha Public Power District. Neither employee’s injuries were life-threatening.
The arc flash occurred while the two men were working on electrical equipment. It caused a flash fire, pressure blast, and sound blast.
An Arc Flash is an electrical explosion due to a fault condition or short circuit when either a phase to ground or phase to phase conductor is connected and current flows through the air. Arc flashes cause electrical equipment to explode, often resulting in injury or death to workers and destruction of electrical equipment.
In this case, the arc flash briefly disrupted power in the StratCom building, but a back-up generator quickly kicked in and operations were unaffected.
There are a variety of reasons why an Arc Flash can occur, but most of them are human error and preventable. Many arc flashes occur when maintenance workers are manipulating live equipment for testing or repair and accidentally cause a fault or short circuit. Improper tools, improper electrical equipment, corrosion of equipment, improper work techniques and lack of electrical safety training are just some of the events that can lead to a devastating arc flash or arc blast.
When an arc flash happens, it does so without warning and is lightning quick. The result of this violent event is usually destruction of the equipment involved, fire, and severe injury or death to any nearby people. Proper safety and protection measures must be taken to limit the damage from an arc flash which include conducting an arc flash study, short circuit study, and NFPA 70E electrical safety training.
Contact a Martin Technical Electrical Safety Expert for a free consultation on how we can help with your Arc Flash Risk Assessment, Labeling, Training & Safety Needs.
Read more from original source.