Terrible Incident – Learnings

I was just reading the latest edition of Electrical Connection magazine (a good read if you don’t already get it). Dale West talks about an incident where a mate of his was killed in an electrical arc flash incident and another badly burnt.

He provides the following learnings that could be applied to any industry except learning 2, which is electrically related:

  1. Never assume anything based on past experience.
  2. Investigate every trip.
  3. Don’t pressure anyone to hurry up.
  4. Don’t allow yourself to be pressured.

I remember I was about to close an 11kV circuit breaker in my younger days after a network fault. I had my hand on the handle to close the breaker and was just thinking about the load coming on line, if the circuit breaker was likely to trip on cold load pickup, etc. I had the boss standing over my shoulder saying ‘get on with it’. I took a few extra moments to think before closing the circuit breaker. Everything went well but how would he have felt if I had been killed?

I suggest that everyone should take Dale’s learning on board. There are often no second chances with electricity and so the learnings are especially relevant for electrical workers.

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