Electrical Safety Cycle: A Written ESP

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Electrical Safety Cycle: A Written ESP

A written electrical safety program (ESP) is a key part of the e-Hazard Safety Cycle™. Moreover, it is required by law. Yet even though OSHA requires them, ESPs are often missing from companies’ safety plans. A written ESP clarifies policy for training and enforcement of safe electrical practices; without one, training and auditing are hampered before you start.

For industrial sites, an electrical safety-related work practices program using OSHA 29 CFR 1910.331 – 335 and 399 is a minimum. If the industrial site has generation, transmission or distribution of electricity, it must also have a program complying with OSHA 1910.269. Many companies use NFPA 70E® and/or the NESC® to comply with the OSHA standards, but having a written program based on the documents is more cost effective and practical (from a copyright perspective) than directly training to specific standards. The standards are program-guidance documents rather than program documents. Many companies choose to train directly from NFPA 70E® due to its practical nature, but a written electrical safety program using ALL the standards (NFPA, NETA®, OSHA, and NESC®) for reference can be more practical when company policy differs from the standards (for example, by allowing exceptions, or by requiring MORE than any given standard). While it may take time to write the ESP, it is required. If it is thorough, the ESP can essentially become your standard and can be more effective than using a standard program guide without interpretation.

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To make this part of your electrical safety cycle, contact us for our written electrical safety program (ESP) consulting service or attend our Electrical Safety Program Compliance Strategies class. We can assist in helping you complete your written electrical safety program or by auditing your current program.

Hugh Hoagland

does research and testing of PPE exposed to electrical arcs and is an arc flash expert. Hugh is a Sr. Consultant at ArcWear and Sr. Partner at e-Hazard. Read more about Hugh.

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