Canadian Electrical Industry News Week

August 11, 2020

By Terry Becker

The CSA Z462 Workplace electrical safety Standard, both the 2015 edition and the 2018 edition, require that a mandatory risk assessment procedure be completed for discrete energized electrical work tasks. This fact may not be known, or may be misinterpreted by the employer who is applying CSA Z462 as a basis of due diligence with respect to workplace health and safety regulations. During training, the information provided to supervisors and qualified electrical workers may not have covered the topic, described what the required risk assessment process is, or explained that the process shall be documented in order to comply with the mandatory CSA Z462, Clause 4.1.6.8 Risk Assessment Procedure.

Risk assessment is not hazard analysis. It is not enough just to identify that qualified electrical workers are exposed to shock and/or arc flash hazards and get them to wear PPE! You need to consider both the potential for injury or damage to health as well as the likelihood of occurrence. In reality, we want to prevent exposure before we protect.

So what are the important aspects of the risk assessment procedure that need to be communicated? First, the important definitions, then the procedure’s steps.

Important risk assessment definitions

In CSA Z462 the following definitions are provided related to risk:

  • Risk — a combination of the likelihood of occurrence of injury or damage to health, and the potential severity of injury or damage to health that results from a hazard.
  • Risk Assessment — an overall process that identifies hazards, and estimates the likelihood of occurrence of injury or damage to health that results from a hazard.

Note: As used in the CSA Z462 Standard, a “arc flash risk assessment” and a “shock risk assessment” are types of risk assessments, each dealing with a different hazard. The overall risk assessment procedure will require a work task’s arc flash risk assessment and shock risk assessment to be completed in order to determine additional protective measures to reduce risk.

These definitions apply when using the CSA Z462 Clause 4.1.6.8 Risk Assessment Procedure.

Risk assessment procedure steps

Three key steps are required:

1. Identify if the assigned discrete energized electrical work task(s) will expose the qualified electrical worker to shock and arc flash hazards. The work task may expose the worker to just one of them, or to both. Examples of discrete energized electrical work tasks are voltage measurement, current measurement, energized repair or alteration, racking in or out power circuit breakers, and installing temporary protective grounds. Remember: testing for the absence of voltage is energized electrical work!

2. Assess the inherent or initial risk level for the energized electrical work task. (Note that “inherent risk” or “initial risk” is the risk level present without assessing any additional risk control methods such as engineering controls, work procedures, PPE, etc.). Assessing inherent risk can be completed by using a defined electrical hazard risk assessment matrix and associated risk register table and (examples will be provided later). You will also be required to complete separate shock and arc flash risk assessments as components of the overall risk assessment process.

3. Implement risk controls according to the hierarchy of risk control methods to achieve a residual risk level that is as low as reasonably practicable (Note that “residual risk” is the risk level remaining after all of the required risk control methods are implemented, there is no zero risk). If the inherent risk level is High, then apply all available risk control methods to reduce the residual risk level to Low or Medium. In the field, it is critical that the Qualified Electrical Worker documents (on their Energized Electrical Job Safety Planning form) the risk control methods which must be applied to achieve the residual risk level of low or medium.

It is important to note that CSA Z462 Clause 4.1.6.8.3 in the 2018 edition places specific emphasis on human error and the impact it can have with respect to residual risk. Human error must be managed by the qualified electrical worker in real time in the field just before completing the assigned energized electrical work tasks.

It is also noted that the risk assessment procedure and its related process shall be documented in the employer’s electrical safety program.

How do I implement a risk assessment procedure?

I am often asked, “What is the Risk Assessment Procedure, and how do we implement it?” In the end, detailed information and a qualitative process were provided in Annex F of the 2015 edition of CSA Z462. This content was removed from the CSA Z462 2018 edition and a more simplified description was provided in Annex F (so don’t throw away your copies of the 2015 edition yet). Additionally, for a detailed review of generic risk assessment processes, you can also refer to the CSA Z1002 Standard, which is the basis for the content in CSA Z462 Annex F content.

Implementing a comprehensive and documented qualitative risk assessment process is not complicated. It is a simplified process that fulfils the CSA Z462 risk assessment procedure requirement. Yes, there is a subjective element, and this has to be acknowledged and managed when performing the risk assessment.

Some of the factors influencing the risk assessment outcome include:

  • the experience of the people involved
  • the quality, applicability, and interpretation of documented statistics, and/or history and experience with past incidents
  • confirming you have qualified workers and they are competent for the work tasks being assessed
  • ensuring human error and behaviours are managed
  • reviewing your electrical equipment maintenance practices and understanding the condition of your equipment
  • knowing how often your qualified electrical workers may be exposed
  • ensuring that the qualified electrical worker is familiar with the specific electrical equipment to be worked on, and
  • understanding what elements of the hierarchy of risk control methods are available to be applied to minimize the residual risk level
  • ensuring that when arc flash and shock PPE, tools and equipment are required that they are available, compliant and testing current where testing is required (e.g. rubber insulating gloves)

 

Where do I begin?

It is a matter of documenting the process in your company’s electrical safety program, being trained on the process and working as a team to implement the process for individual discrete energized electrical work tasks. The CSA Z462 2018 Edition Table 2 gives us the starting point with a comprehensive list of energized electrical work tasks for AC and DC electrical equipment. Each individual work task can have a risk assessment completed for it proactively by an employer’s electrical safety committee (ESC). Meetings can be scheduled, minutes and action items created, and proactive committee-based risk assessments completed. The results of this process can then be provided to qualified electrical workers to apply in the field before they proceed to complete a discrete energized electrical work task. After the initial risk assessments are completed, the ESC can meet on an annual basis to review and revalidate the determined residual risk levels and take into consideration any changes.

As mentioned earlier, the individual shock risk assessments and arc flash risk assessments completed for each discrete work task are in fact individual risk assessments that are completed within the overall risk assessment process. For the specific energized electrical work task the applicable work task/hazard pairs are defined, and the individual shock risk assessment and/or arc flash risk assessment is completed for each work task/hazard pair. The highest residual risk level of all of the work task/hazard pairs related to completing a specific job is that job’s overall risk level. A defined risk assessment matrix and risk register table, as illustrated below in Figures 1 and 2, can be used to complete and document the overall risk level.

Figure 1 – Electrical Hazard Risk Assessment Matrix

 

Figure 2: Residual Risk Level Estimation Required Actions

 

Obviously, more detailed training and explanation is required than can be offered in this article. The intent is to open a dialogue, clarify what the CSA Z462 risk assessment procedure requires to be completed, and ensure you are aware.

I encourage you to ensure that you review and document the risk assessment process that you will be applying in your company’s electrical safety program. If you have a safety department, work with the HSE professional in your company. Ensure that you organize scheduled meetings and retain meeting minutes documenting the participants, the discussions that occurred, the proceedings of the risk assessment process, the decisions which were made, and the final results of the committee-based risk assessments. Supervisors can then work with qualified electrical workers to apply the documented policies and practices in their company’s electrical safety program, including documenting and implementing the required hierarchy of risk control methods to reduce risk.

Please submit any questions or comments you may have regarding this article to Terry Becker, P.Eng., CESCP, IEEE Senior Member via email at terry.becker@twbesc.ca.

Terry Becker, P.Eng., CESCP, IEEE Senior Member is the first past Vice-Chair of the CSA Z462 Workplace electrical safety Standard Technical Committee and currently a Voting Member and Working Group Leader for Clause 4.1 and the Annexes. Terry is also a Voting Member on the CSA Z463 Maintenance of electrical systems Standard and a Voting Member of the IEEE 1584 Guide for Performing Arc-Flash Hazard Calculations. Terry has presented at Conferences and Workshops on electrical safety in Canada, the USA, India, and Australia. Terry is a Professional Engineer in AB, BC, SK, MN and ON. Terry is an Electrical Safety Specialist, Management Consultant at TW Becker Electrical Safety Consulting Inc. and can be reached at 587-433-3777 or by email: terry.becker@twbesc.ca.

 

Changing Scene

  • Prev
Last week's disastrous floods have left many B.C. residents homeless, stranded or in desperate need ...
The Canadian Apprenticeship Forum (CAF-FCA) will launch a new program to empower skilled trades ...
Sean Dunnigan, President of Techspan Industries Inc., is pleased to announce the appointment of ...
The Electrical Safety Authority (ESA) would like to advise that the Minister of Government and ...
LabTest Certification Inc. is proud to announce its most recent recognition by OSHA as a Nationally ...
On November 13th, the Universal Women’s Network virtually hosted the 2021 Women of ...
Soussanna Karas, Director of Licensing at ESA, breaks down the risks of the underground economy ...
BCEA U40 group invites you to their Professional Development virtual series...     ...
Three accomplished women with diverse backgrounds are the newest members of Ontario Power ...


 

EIN ABB logo 400ABB is an international company with a large global presence, but did you know that a significant percentage of the products sold in Canada are also designed and manufactured locally?

ABB’s Installation Products division, formerly known as Thomas & Betts, operates seven manufacturing facilities in Canada, six of them in Quebec and one in Alberta.

Many of their most well-known brands, including IBERVILLE®️️, Marrette®️️, Microlectric®️️, and Star Teck®️️, are products that started in Canada and are still manufactured locally to meet Canadian standards.

 

 


 

Canadian Electrical Contractor Discussion Group: Can You Count the Deficiencies?

EIN CECD 400Have you ever been called to fix the work of a 'handyman'?

"Was supposedly done by a"certified ' electrician....told the homeowner that he got a $266 permit....no record at TSBC. Can you count the deficiencies?"

"There is a second panel change in the triplex also.......even more deficiencies. Think the guy was a glorified handyman. Ones not obvious: 240 BB heat hooked up 120....drier on 2p20....range on 2p50....water heater fed with 2c14 Bx on 2p15."

Go HERE to join the discussion

 


 



 

 Siemens Built In Isolation Products 400By Alyssa Kerslake

Life safety today is top of mind for nearly everyone. There is a certain level of trust that fire alarm systems continue to work within a fire incident. With system survivability being a key concern to regulators, building managers, and the public, Siemens has developed systems that are designed to meet and exceed regulations that protect people, property, and assets. 

One of the most significant concerns, particularly in a large multi-story building, is implementing a secure and fully functional fire alarm system. Today, it is not uncommon to have power and data for hundreds of fire alarm devices connected over a single pair of wires. The concern is, if a fault occurs somewhere between the devices, the zone and location of the device may no longer be known, or the operation of that circuit reduced or possibly impaired. These scenarios could allow an undetected catastrophic event to develop within the space due to inoperable life safety devices. 

 

Read More


 

 

David Gordon

By Terry Becker, P.Eng., CESCP, IEEE Senior Member

The CSA Z462 Workplace electrical safety Standard published its 2021 Edition in January.  A mandatory requirement for an employer is developing, implementing, and auditing an Electrical Safety Program.  If you have an Electrical Safety Program, is it up to date in its policies, practices and procedural requirements, is it performing as expected?  Workers do not necessarily do what you expect, they do what you inspect!  Management of change is required.

I have been involved in supporting industry with respect to shock and arc flash hazards in the workplace and in understanding what needs to be done to ensure worker safety, that effective defendable due diligence is established, and evidence of compliance is available related to occupational health & safety regulations both Provincial, Territorially or Federally.  I am in Ontario this week completing a detailed Electrical Safety Audit at multiple enterprise facilities.


Read More


 

Product News

  • Prev
On the hottest days of the summer and the coldest of the winter, the Napoleon NS18 heat pump and ...
Lumenwerx is pleased to launch Aera, an innovative lighting family that marks a new era in recessed ...
Eaton’s humidity sensor and fan control (HDFS3P1) device is a single pole humidity sensor for ...
With an EC motor and smart control, ORA-EC40 series air curtains are ideal for commercial and ...
Klein Tools expands its line of insulated screwdrivers with new lengths and tips, as well as a new ...
EarthTronics LED High Lumen Wattage & Color Selectable Series to provide flexibility and full ...
Eaton’s astronomic programmable timer (AT18HM) device reduces energy consumption by automating ...
The HomeGuard LED family of residential security lights, with rugged die cast aluminum ...
This preassembled constant wattage heating cable from Ouellet is specialized for roof and gutter ...


 

Milwaukee M12 Cable Stripper

Connect plug-in lamps, holiday lighting, and small appliances to the top “Controlled” outlet, while the bottom “Powered” outlet remains always on. The DW15R features tamper resistant receptacles with built-in shutters to prevent the insertion of unintended foreign objects. As well, the integrated button with vanishing feedback LED provides manual push-button on/off control and clear indiciation at any time.

Simplify control of the residence - schedule lamps and connected loads to turn on/off at specific times or based on sunrise/sunset, easily group smart devices into rooms, and create scenes to activate multiple loads at once. Utilize the auto-shutoff feature as a countdown timer in closets, hallways and bathrooms.

Read More


 

 

Incoplas Hybrid

Now available for Siemens Class 52 Actuators and Indicator Lights are the new Class 1, Div. 2 contact blocks. Suitable for use in Hazardous Location, Class 1, Div. 2 applications when used in a suitable enclosure. No matter which style actuator you use, the common base provided attaches to the hazardous location contact blocks easily.

Hazardous Location (HL) Series Contact Blocks are good for Hazardous Location CL1, DIV2 Applications using a Standard Enclosure NEMA 1, 12, 13, 4, 4X.

HL Series Contact Blocks are rated for switching high inrush loads like Tungsten Lamps.

 

Read More


 

 

EarthTronics 25-Watt Emergency Driver for Linear Highbay

The 20A Outlet and 15A Outlet have the ability to allow function specific Inserts to be installed/removed/swapped making this platform an optimal choice for renovations and new construction. The Swidget Outlet is installed using the same wiring as a standard wall receptacle and when paired with a Swidget Insert turns into a powerful and flexible Smart Home device. The swapability of the Inserts ensures that this will work with Smart Home wireless systems now and in the future.

The Swidget product line targets the Home Automation and Smart Home markets with a unique future-proof solution. Swidget currently offers eight smart Inserts with different functionalities including Wi-Fi control, indoor air quality sensor, temperature, humidity, and motion sensors, as well as a USB charger guide light, and emergency lighting. They can all be controlled from anywhere with the Swidget App for iOS/Android or Alexa and Google Home.

Read More


 

Peers & Profiles

  • Prev
Allana Kellett-Jamieson loves working in the electrical sector and is proud of the great focus ...
As the head of ABB Canada's electrification business unit, Éric Deschênes is no newcomer to the ...
Karen Pullen knows what it’s like to be the only woman on a construction site, and as a proud ...
As of February 2021, Martin Stephenson is the new President and CEO of Signify Canada.   ...
This past July, Kerith Richards, who has worked for Service Wire Company for the last seven years, ...
EngWorks was formed in 2004 as an electrical engineering and consulting firm by Allan Bozek, “After ...
Headquartered in Concord, Ontario, Mercury Lighting services national retail, ...
Among the recipients of the 2021 Clean50 Awards announced last month is Carolina Gallo, Vice ...
Sarah Silverstein is a principal with Liteline along side her two brothers Mark and Daniel. ...
As a 34-year-old female owner of an electrical contracting business, Danielle Gray may be unique. ...


EngWorksBy Blake Marchand

EngWorks was formed in 2004 as an electrical engineering and consulting firm by Allan Bozek, “After a short time we realized there was a niche in hazardous locations, in particular in hazardous area classification design requirements for various facilities. And also helping people understand just how the Canadian Electrical Code applies to hazardous locations.”

Given the complexity of hazardous locations, Bozek saw a need for education while working in the field and began developing training courses designed.

Read More


 

Éric DeschênesBy Line Goyette

As the head of ABB Canada's electrification business unit, Éric Deschênes is no newcomer to the electrical industry. He has a long track record and a passion for finding practical solutions to optimize technology adoption. Deschênes took on his current role with ABB January of 2020, he joined ABB in 2017 as Executive VP of the Electrification business after 15 years with Schneider Electric.

We met with him recently to discuss his new role at the helm of ABB Canada and his plans moving forward. He began by pointing out that the recent change to ABB Canada's structure, as elsewhere in the world, was made to make customer relations more straightforward. 

Read More


 

Copper $US Dollar price per pound

Kerrwil Publications Great Place to Work. Certified December 2019 - December 2020

538 Elizabeth Street, Midland,Ontario, Canada L4R2A3 +1 705 527 7666
©2021 All rights reserved

Use of this Site constitutes acceptance of our Privacy Policy (effective 1.1.2016)
The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with the prior written permission of Kerrwil