To prevent injury from exposure to electrical conductors, it's important that all electrical protective equipment be maintained in a safe and reliable condition. Electrical protective equipment includes the following:
All electrical protective equipment made of rubber should meet the established safety standards and specifications discussed below.
Note: For more on this topic, see Course 715, Electrical Safety Basics.
Maximum use voltages must conform to those listed in Table I-4.
|Class of Equipment||Maximum Use Voltage1 (AC rms)||Retest Voltage2 (AC - rms)||Restest Voltage2 (DC - avg)|
1 The maximum use voltage is the ac voltage (rms) classification of the protective equipment that designates the maximum nominal design voltage of the energized system that may be safely worked. The nominal design voltage is equal to the phase-to-phase voltage on multiphase circuits. However, the phase-to-ground potential is considered to be the nominal design voltage if:
2 The proof-test voltage shall be applied continuously for at least 1 minute, but no more than 3 minutes.
To make sure electrical protective equipment actually performs as designed, it must be inspected for damage before each day's use and immediately following any incident that can reasonably be suspected of having caused damage. Insulating gloves must be given an air test, along with the inspection.
Insulating equipment must not be used if any of the following defects are detected:
Insulating equipment found to have other defects that might affect its insulating properties must be removed from service and returned for testing. It must be cleaned as needed to remove foreign substances. It must be stored in such a location and in such a manner to protect it from:
Protector gloves must be worn over insulating gloves. An exception is when using Class 0 gloves, under limited-use conditions, where small equipment and parts manipulation necessitate unusually high finger dexterity. But, it's important to note that extra care must be taken while visually examining the glove. Also, make sure to avoid handling sharp objects.
Any other class of glove may be used for similar work without protector gloves if the employer can demonstrate that the possibility of physical damage to the gloves is small and if the class of glove is one class higher than that required for the voltage involved. Insulating gloves that have been used without protector gloves may not be used at a higher voltage until they have been tested.
Electrical protective equipment must be subjected to periodic electrical tests. Test voltages and the maximum intervals between tests must be in accordance with Table I-4 and Table I-5.
|Type of Equipment||When to Test|
|Rubber insulating line hose||Upon indication that insulating value is suspect and after repair.|
|Rubber insulating covers||Upon indication that insulating value is suspect and after repair.|
|Rubber insulating blankets||Before first issue and every 12 months thereafter1 upon indication that insulating value is suspect; and after repair.|
|Rubber insulating gloves||Before first issue and every 6 months thereafter1 upon indication that insulating value is suspect; after repair; and after use without protectors.|
|Rubber insulating sleeves||Before first issue and every 12 months thereafter1 upon indication that insulating value is suspect; and after repair.|
1 If the insulating equipment has been electrically tested but not issued for service, the insulating equipment may not be placed into service unless it has been electrically tested within the previous 12 months.
The test method used must reliably indicate whether the insulating equipment can withstand the voltages involved. Repaired insulating equipment must be retested before it may be used by employees.
Note: Standard electrical test methods considered as meeting this requirement are given in the national consensus standards of The American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM).
If the insulating equipment fails to pass inspections or electrical tests, it may not be used by employees. Below is a list of exceptions:
The employer must certify that equipment has been tested in accordance with the requirements of the standard, and the certification must identify the equipment that passed the test and the date it was tested.
Marking equipment and entering the results of the tests and the testing dates onto logs are two acceptable ways to meet this requirement.
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