Environmental, Health and Safety Services

Electrical Safety Training

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Unqualified Persons

An “unqualified person” is any person who has not received specific training regarding electrical hazards involved in the work task and how to avoid the hazards. EHS offers awareness level training to unqualified persons who would like more information regarding common electrical hazards and protective measures, including safe work practices for extension cords and ground-fault circuit-interrupters (GFCI).

An unqualified person may assist a qualified person provided that they are wearing appropriate personal protective equipment for the approach boundary they are crossing (i.e. either Limited Approach Boundary or Arc Flash Boundary), and are escorted by the qualified person at all times. Under no circumstances must the unqualified person cross the Restricted Approach Boundary.

Qualified Persons

Qualified persons must be designated (i.e. authorized) by their department to perform work on energized electrical systems or equipment and must attend relative required EHS safety training. EHS training is intended to work in conjunction with any on-the-job technical training that the department provides or requires. 

Note: EHS Electrical Qualified Person training provides information related to live electrical work hazards and selection and use of appropriate personal protective equipment. It is not intended to provide the technical skills and knowledge necessary to work on electrical systems or components, nor does it authorize any person to do so.

A person can be considered qualified with respect to certain equipment and methods, but unqualified for others.

Note: Unqualified persons assisting in energized electrical work must be under the direct supervision of a qualified person for the duration of the exposure once they cross the Limited Approach Boundary or the Arc Flash Protection Boundary.  An employee who is undergoing on-the-job training and who, in the course of such training, has demonstrated an ability to perform duties safely at his or her level of training, and who is under the direct supervision of a qualified person shall be considered to be a qualified person for the performance of those duties. 

Qualified persons must:

  • Be trained and knowledgeable of the construction and operation of equipment or a specific work method, and be trained to recognize and avoid the electrical hazards that might be present with respect to that equipment or work method.
  • Be familiar with the proper use of the special precautionary techniques, personal protective equipment, including arc-flash, insulating and shielding materials, and insulating tools and test equipment.
  • Be trained in the skills and techniques necessary to distinguish exposed energized parts from other (non-energized) parts of electrical equipment.
  • Be training in skills and techniques necessary to determine the nominal voltage of exposed live parts by reading drawings, signs, and labels.
  • Be trained in the approach distances and the corresponding voltages to which the qualified person will be exposed.
  • Be trained in the decision making process necessary to determine the degree and extent of the hazard and the personal protective equipment and job planning necessary to perform the task safely.
  • Attend EHS Lockout/Tagout Authorized Person training.
  • Be certified in First Aid and CPR.
  • Be familiar with emergency procedures for electrical incidents.
  • Attend EHS Confined Space Entry training, if applicable.

Departments must establish and maintain documentation that provide evidence of the qualification of each employee, and the documentation must define the limits of each employee’s qualifications. The Electrical Qualified Person Form can be used for such purposes.