Written by Steve Stephenson
NFPA 70E, but modified to reflect the Canadian workplace (Z462-12 is aligned with the 2012 edition of the Canadian Electrical Code Part I) the Z462 standard provides standards for safe electrical work practices.
Clause 126.96.36.199 in Z462-12 provides the arc flash labeling requirements. Z462 has the same labeling requirements as NFPA 70E, with the exception that it adds one additional requirement – (d) date of the hazard analysis. The Z462 labeling requirements are:
Electrical equipment such as switchboards, panelboards, industrial control panels, meter socket enclosures, and motor control centres (MCCs) that are in other than dwelling units and that are likely to require examination, adjustment, servicing, or maintenance while energized shall be field marked with a label containing all the following information:
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The Canadian Standards Association web site states that the second edition (Z462-12) provides:
CSA Z462 renames the "arc flash protection boundary" as the "arc flash boundary".
Z462-12 provides a definition of the “arc flash boundary” as establishing a hazard zone (a conceptual boundary) around potentially hazardous electrical equipment. It specifies that the “arc flash boundary” either be calculated or be obtained from the applicable Hazard/Risk Category Table.
A new table is available to help employers determine what PPE should be specified on arc flash labels. The new table is designed to identify required arc flash PPE by its energy rating instead of by category number. This is being done in order to move away from using the hazard category number for determining the required PPE.
In the previous version of Z462 the terms "hazard" and "risk" were used interchangeably and were sometimes combined into a single term; "hazard/risk." CSA Z462-12 brings the use of these terms in line with how they are used in international safety standards.
Safety management systems recognize that "hazards" should be identified and eliminated whenever possible. On the other hand “risk” is to be reduced such that it is effectively controlled. This results in an elimination and control strategy for electrical safety. This change in terminology puts the focus first on eliminating or controlling hazardous energy. When that is not possible, then PPE is used to protect workers.
CSA Z462-12 adds a new term: "arc rated". This term is used to distinguish PPE that provides arc flash protection from PPE that provides flame resistance or flash-fire resistance (FR rating). CSA points out that “the arc rating assigned to protective equipment should not be confused with the arc flash incident energy calculated or estimated for electrical equipment (circuits). The former refers to the amount of protection offered while the latter refers to the nature of the hazard".
CSA Z462-12 changes the training requirement from requiring “periodic training” to a requirement for training every three years.
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