Employees at BAS Castings Ltd. used a screwdriver to bypass the interlock mechanism on a fuse panel door and suffered serious skin burns due to an electrical flashover.
What is an ‘Electrical Flashover’?
Electrical arcing (sometimes called a ‘flashover’ or ‘arc flash’), perhaps as a
result of a short circuit caused by unsafe working practices, can generate intense
heat leading to deep-seated and slow-healing burns, even if it persists for a short
time. The intense ultraviolet radiation from an electric arc can also cause damage to
the eyes. Often those working with or near electricity do not appreciate the risk of
serious injury and consequential damage to equipment that can arise from arcing.
- No rules for electrical safety
- No safe systems of work
- No permit to work system
- No risk assessment
- No work instructions
Stockwell Safety Comment
Flashovers are a very common factor in electrical incidents. A significant cause is workers failing to follow the correct procedures. Underlying this is the failure of management to have a robust management system infrastructure in place.
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