Eaton Cooper (MEDC) arc flash risk assessment

Eaton Cooper (MEDC) Limited

Client: Eaton Cooper (MEDC) Limited
Name of Project: Arc Flash Risk Assessment Study

About Eaton Cooper (MEDC)

Since 1975, the oil and gas industry has relied on the MEDC brand for the most reliable and highly respected alarms and loudspeakers in the industry.  Designed for potentially explosive atmospheres and harsh industrial and marine environments.

Requirements

Following a corporate directive from HQ, Head Electrical Engineer Ken Gutman contacted ESUK to provide assistance
and a cost for the provision of an arc flash risk assessment study. ESUK requested site data and drawings to be supplied to help evaluate the client’s requirements.

Solution

Electrical Safety UK Ltd, who had the capability of undertaking complex arc flash hazard analysis and had good knowledge of US standards (NFPA 70E) for electrical safety, were contracted to undertake risk assessments.

Approach

Following the submission of site data, ESUK were able to evaluate the requirements and prepare an accurate quotation to facilitate an arc flash risk assessment study. ESUK were then contracted during March 2014 to undertake a full complex study at the site in Sutton in Ashfield. Partially completed data sheets were compiled by the ESUK team and supplied to site for their completion. A site meeting was held to allow ESUK engineers to train & assist the Eaton team in the final data collection process.

Once the data and connectivity was verified by site, using SKM modelling software, the ESUK engineers produced the calculations and a draft report which detailed arc flash incident energy, flash protection boundaries, shock protection boundaries, fault levels to IEC60909 and label requirements that were European compliant. The report was backed by mitigation strategies and tailored to meet Eaton’s requirements on working distances and working arrangements.

The main LV switchboard on site had a calculated incident energy of 62cal/cm2 placing it in the “dangerous” category according to NFPA 70E and no safe PPE exists to protect workers from the heat, blast and ballistic effects of an arcing incident. Recommendations were made by ESUK to mitigate this high incident energy levels and would be further discussed in the second phase of the project.

Bespoke site training sessions were delivered by ESUK to all engineering staff, detailing arc flash awareness, risk assessments, avoidance and reduction.

Recommendation

Ken Gutman, Senior Electrical Engineer for Eaton Cooper (MEDC) said “ESUK’s approach was always professional and was complemented by their helpful and friendly style – a style that delivers a managed project on time, to budget with little if any disruption to our business”

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