Electric Shock


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Arc Flash CSA Z462

Arc Flash - What is the Issue?

Arc Flash is an explosion caused by the release of energy in an electric arc.


  • Dust, water, impurities,​ contamination, corrosion, animals

  • Accidental contact, dropped or improper tools

  • Over-voltages across narrow gaps

  • Insulation failure

  • Loose connections

  • Equipment failure

  • Working near energized equipment without appropriate PPE

Arc Flash Fire

The Dangers

  • Thermal temperature can reach over 5000 degrees​

  • Blinding light, deafening noise

  • Copper vaporizes and expands by a factor of 67,000

  • Produces a lethal spray of molten steel and shrapnel

  • Pressure wave of up to 2000lbs per sqft

Personal Injuries

  • Electric shock, severe burns, blindness, deafness, shrapnel wounds, lung blast injuries, concussion, collapsed lungs, death​​

Damage to Business and Property

  • Damaged/destroyed equipment,​​ production downtime

  • If the cause is found to be due poor maintenance or neglect: fines, imprisonment, business closure

Electrical Fire
Arc Flash Injury_edited.jpg
Hover to Reveal Injury
  • 30,000 electrical shock accidents occur each year.*

  • More than 2,000 people per year are admitted to burn centres with severe arc flash burns.**

  • Sixty-four occupational related electrical deaths occurred in Ontario between 1999 and 2008.**

  • In the same ten year period, 246 workers sustained critical injuries of an electrical nature.**

* Source – Electrical Safety Authority.

** Source – 2008 Ontario Electrical Safety Report.

Arc Flash PPE

Your Responsibility and the Solution

To address this issue, The Canadian Standards Association has introduced CSA Z462.

Canadian legislation has now made it mandatory for all facilities with three-phase electrical power to properly identify and protect workers against risks associated with shock hazard and arc flash through labelling, training, coordination, etc.

What We Do

Arc Flash and Shock Hazard calculations are performed according to the latest IEEE, NFPA, and CSA standards to identify the maximum expected incident energy if an Arc Fault were to occur. To perform these calculations, it is necessary to understand the manner and method in which a system is protected.

The potential short circuit levels throughout the system need to be known and a complete set of protective device settings are required. Given this information, our engineers perform a series of calculations, looking at different operating conditions, loading levels, and generation levels. Worst case results are compiled, and from these results incident energy levels are categorized and documented for the entire three-phase electrical system. Approach boundaries and PPE are determined and labeling is installed, notifying all site staff and contractors regarding the potential hazards they might face when working at or near the electrical system.

Related Standards

  • CSA Z462-21

  • Canadian Electrical Code: Rule 2-306

  • Occupational Health & Safety Act

  • US National Fire Protection Association: Standard NFPA 70E

  • IEEE Standard 1584

  • Bill C45

Disclaimer: Arc flash photographs and videos are for training/educational purposes only and are not representative of Techtric Engineering’s Work

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