OSHAAccording to the Workplace Safety Awareness Council, in an effort to limit electrical injuries in the workplace, OSHA has passed a law that only allows a “Qualified” person to work on or around energized circuits or equipment.

Qualified person: One who has received training in and has demonstrated skills and knowledge in the construction and operation of electric equipment and installations and the hazards involved.

Note 1 to the definition of "qualified person:" Whether an employee is considered to be a "qualified person" will depend upon various circumstances in the workplace. For example, it is possible and, in fact, likely for an individual to be considered "qualified" with regard to certain equipment in the workplace, but "unqualified" as to other equipment.

Note 2 to the definition of "qualified person:" An employee who is undergoing on-the-job training and who, in the course of such training, has demonstrated an ability to perform duties safely at his or her level of training and who is under the direct supervision of a qualified person is considered to be a qualified person for the performance of those duties.

Additional requirements for qualified persons:

Qualified persons (i.e. those permitted to work on or near exposed energized parts) shall, at a minimum, be trained in and familiar with the following:

• 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, and

• The clearance distances specified in 1910.333(c) and the corresponding voltages to which the qualified person will be exposed.

Type of training: The training required by this section shall be of the classroom or on-the-job type. The degree of training provided shall be determined by the risk to the employee.

Fast Fact: It’s the employer’s responsibility to determine the training required and to ensure that the employee is adequately training for the tasks undertaken.