Questions About Arc Flashes

Many starting electricians have heard horror stories about the dangers of arc flashing, and rightly so. Arc flashes are incredibly dangerous. Here are some frequently asked questions about arc flashes that everyone needs to know the answers to.

Questions About Arc Flashes

Q: What are arc flashes?

A: Arc flashes happen far more often than they should. They always happen with no warning. Essentially, an arc flash is an instant explosion involving electrical energy which occurs when there is a breakdown between the conductors and the high-voltage gap. This breakdown allows the electricity to bridge the gap. The force that the average arc flash delivers has been measured to be the equivalent of a hand grenade going off right in front of you. The force travels at roughly 700 miles per hour.

Q: How do arc flashes occur?

A: There are several ways that an arc flash can occur. One of these ways is when an object made from conductive metal is introduced into an environment which is high-amperage in nature. Screwdrivers and other simple hand tools are notorious for causing arcing under the “right” conditions. Some more rare instances of arc flashing have been caused by dust build-up (dust is actually conductive) and from equipment malfunction due to the fault of the manufacturer.

Q: How can arc flashing be prevented?

A: Obviously proper safety guidelines should always be followed. Many electricians also swear by using such modern technology such as easypower software. This software can monitor conditions in the environment and allow the electrician on the job to make the right choice as far as available options. Critical reports are delivered automatically to the user and the processing power of the software is considered the best on the market today. Electricians should use all available tools that are available to them to make their job safer.

Questions About Arc Flashes
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