ASSE Publishes New Edition of Electrical Safety Reference

The Sixth Edition of "An Illustrated Guide to Electrical Safety" was edited by electrical safety specialist Michael Kovacic and former OSHA electrical safety instructor John "Grizzy" Grzywacz.

The American Society of Safety Engineers has published a new Sixth Edition of "An Illustrated Guide to Electrical Safety," a reference to navigate through recent changes in OSHA's 29 CFR 1910 Subpart S, Part 1, "Design Safety Standards for Electrical Systems," and Part 2, "Electrical Safety-Related Work Practices." This new edition also synchronizes the requirements of OSHA to the National Electrical Code® and National Fire Protection Association's NFPA 70E standard and requirements for construction. Visit https://www.asse.org/cartpage.php?link=4432 to order it.

Updates that have been made to Subpart S include:

  • Added sections from the NEC for deteriorating agents, mechanical execution of work, and mounting and cooling of equipment
  • Updated working clearances and guarding for both low- and high-voltage installation
  • Additional regulations for branch circuits, overcurrent protection (including cord-and-plug connected equipment requirements), GFCIs, and grounding
  • Updated wiring methods
  • Significant updates to classified locations
  • Significant updates and additions to special systems

ASSE noted that electrical injuries are more likely to result in fatalities than other types of injuries, and a seven-year study by BLS found 2,576 U.S. workers died and another 32,807 sustained injuries that resulted in a loss of an average of 13 days away from work from electrical shock or burn injuries. "Wiring methods, components and equipment for general use" was fifth among OSHA's most-cited standard for the year ending Sept. 30, 2011, the society's news release stated.

The new edition was edited by electrical safety specialist Michael Kovacic and former OSHA electrical safety instructor John "Grizzy" Grzywacz. Included in it are 130 illustrations to help explain the revised OSHA requirements and a cross reference to find new and renumbered sections within the code. Kovacic and Grizzy are voting members of the American Society for Testing and Materials' Committee F18 on Electrical Equipment for Workers.

"Readers are going to have the text of all of the changes that were made, and comments of the people involved," Kovacic said. "They are going to get a background on why OSHA made these changes and what it will mean to electrical safety in the workplace."

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