According to the NFPA 70E, a “Qualified Person" is one who is trained and knowledgeable of the construction and operation of the equipment or the specific work method, and be trained to recognize the hazards present with respect to that equipment or work method.
Such persons shall also be familiar with the use of the precautionary techniques, personal protective equipment, insulating and shielding materials, and insulated tools and test equipment. A person can be considered qualified with respect to certain tasks but still be unqualified for others.
An employee that is undergoing on the job training and who, in the course of such training, has demonstrated the ability to perform duties safely at his or her level of training and who is under the direct supervision of a qualified person shall be considered to be a qualified person for the performance of those duties.
In addition, to be permitted to work within the limited approach of exposed energized conductors and circuit parts the person shall be trained in all of the following:
Qualified employees shall be trained and competent in:
- The skills and techniques necessary to distinguish exposed live parts from other parts of electric equipment
- The skills and techniques necessary to determine the nominal voltage of exposed live parts
- The minimum approach distances specified in this section corresponding to the voltages to which the qualified employee will be exposed, and,
- The decision making process necessary to determine the degree and extent of the hazard and the personal protective equipment and job planning necessary to perform the task safely
A few notes to add to the 70E definition.
- Only the employer can deem an employee qualified after they have had the proper training and have demonstrated profinency using the skills and method learned.
- There is no such thing as NFPA 70E certification, going to a training course does not make an employee qualified.
- The most misunderstood part of the "qualified" term is that it is all emcompassing, you are "qualified" to work on a specific type or piece of equipment.
- Neither a J-card, a masters license, or an engineering degree make you a "qualified person"
- The word "electrician" is not anywhere in the definition of a "qualified person" meaning these rules apply to all employees and you dont have to be an electrician to be "qualified"
5/05/08 - George editted formatting