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Thread: NFPA 70E or other?

  1. #1

    NFPA 70E or other?

    I have been asked to review my companies electrical safety procedures, is there a better resource besides the NFPA 70E? Just wondering before I purchase the book.

  2. #2
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    It is a good place to start although it is not real clear in many areas. It leaves a lot to be desired as far as telling you what you really need to know. If you want that you probably need to buy more books or hire someone, which is likely one of the reasons it is so poorly written.
    Bob

  3. #3
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    As noted above, the NFPA 70E is the document for electrical safety programs I have seen along with some OSHA stuff. A lot of times OSHA will reference following NFPA 70E for compliance to OSHA regs.

    There is a new edition coming out very soon, 2018. If this is your first read of 70E, it may be worthwhile to purchase the handbook.

    Also note that there are training requirements in 70E.

  4. #4
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    YES get 70E... 2018 edition

    Without question, NFPA 70E is a necessary document if you're responsible for electrical safety at a facility in the United States. It's a general consensus safety standard that was initiated by OSHA in its genesis. It's not an OSHA-mandatory document, but if you have electrical OSHA violations you'll need to show that the standard you're following is appropriate. So in that regard, it's pretty much the only way to go. The 2018 pdf copy is available now, but as someone mentioned in an earlier post, you'd be best served by the Handbook which should be available soon.

  5. #5
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    I always buy the handbook, it has pictures. And the authors interpretation, but really for the pictures...

  6. #6
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    How it works officially is that although NFPA 70E is not an "enforceable" standard (like NFPA 70, the NEC), safety requirements are the purview of OSHA. What OSHA says is that if you are an employer, you WILL have a program of electrical safety for your workers, you will review it annually, and your employees that work around electricity will be instructed on it periodically (used to be every 3 years I thought, I might be wrong on that). OSHA regs only give generalities, not specifics, but they "strongly suggest" using a reference standard, such as NFPA 70E. In practice, OSHA generally only gets involved AFTER an accident so if there is one involving electricity, the OSHA investigator is going to ask you what YOUR electrical safety program looks like. If your answer is "We follow NFPA 70E", the conversation will shift to being about details of the accisent. If you answer "Electrical safety program? What electrical safety program?", they will possibly shut down your entire company and haul all managers and supervisors involved off to jail for negligence. Yes, it can be prosecuted as a Federal CRIMINAL offense to not follow the OSHA rules, ignorance is not a valid excuse.

    So does it HAVE TO be NFPA 70E? Technically, no; realistically, yes.
    __________________________________________________ ____________________________
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jraef View Post
    How it works officially is that although NFPA 70E is not an "enforceable" standard (like NFPA 70, the NEC), safety requirements are the purview of OSHA. What OSHA says is that if you are an employer, you WILL have a program of electrical safety for your workers, you will review it annually, and your employees that work around electricity will be instructed on it periodically (used to be every 3 years I thought, I might be wrong on that). OSHA regs only give generalities, not specifics, but they "strongly suggest" using a reference standard, such as NFPA 70E. In practice, OSHA generally only gets involved AFTER an accident so if there is one involving electricity, the OSHA investigator is going to ask you what YOUR electrical safety program looks like. If your answer is "We follow NFPA 70E", the conversation will shift to being about details of the accisent. If you answer "Electrical safety program? What electrical safety program?", they will possibly shut down your entire company and haul all managers and supervisors involved off to jail for negligence. Yes, it can be prosecuted as a Federal CRIMINAL offense to not follow the OSHA rules, ignorance is not a valid excuse.

    So does it HAVE TO be NFPA 70E? Technically, no; realistically, yes.
    If you took the time and resources necessary to create your own standard as thorough as what 70E is, and then keep putting more into it to keep it up to date, it will cost you a lot more then just to use 70E.

    I don't know if there is any other commercially available document that is similar.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jraef View Post
    How it works officially is that although NFPA 70E is not an "enforceable" standard (like NFPA 70, the NEC), safety requirements are the purview of OSHA. What OSHA says is that if you are an employer, you WILL have a program of electrical safety for your workers, you will review it annually, and your employees that work around electricity will be instructed on it periodically (used to be every 3 years I thought, I might be wrong on that). OSHA regs only give generalities, not specifics, but they "strongly suggest" using a reference standard, such as NFPA 70E. In practice, OSHA generally only gets involved AFTER an accident so if there is one involving electricity, the OSHA investigator is going to ask you what YOUR electrical safety program looks like. If your answer is "We follow NFPA 70E", the conversation will shift to being about details of the accisent. If you answer "Electrical safety program? What electrical safety program?", they will possibly shut down your entire company and haul all managers and supervisors involved off to jail for negligence. Yes, it can be prosecuted as a Federal CRIMINAL offense to not follow the OSHA rules, ignorance is not a valid excuse.

    So does it HAVE TO be NFPA 70E? Technically, no; realistically, yes.
    Well said.
    "Electricity is really just organized lightning." George Carlin


    Derek

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