Arc flash severely burns worker at utility facility
An electric arc flash injured a worker at a power generating facility. When the arc flash occurred, a 48-year-old electrician was working on an electrical cabinet that was still powered. The wiring contractor employee suffered second and third-degree burns to his hands, arms and torso.
OSHA cited the power company for two repeated, five serious and two other-than-serious safety citations. The repeated violations relate to the employer failing to ensure the electrical cabinet was not powered down before allowing work to begin and not developing specific steps to power down machinery and prevent starting up during maintenance and servicing. The company was previously cited for similar violations at this facility.
The company's serious violations relate to its failure to:
- Ensure proper grounding of electrical equipment.
- Inform other employers of their electrical lockout program.
- Provide adequate procedures for electrical energy isolation.
The contractor was issued two serious citations. The serious violations related to the employer's failure to coordinate with other employers on the specific requirements of removing power from equipment before maintenance and servicing and exposing workers to electrical hazards.