How to Read an Arc Flash Label

Knowing how to read an arc flash label is crucial for ensuring safety in environments where electrical hazards are present. ErieTec’s Industrial Electrical Specialist, Brian Davis, discusses a few key components that have to be displayed on an arc flash label and what they mean.

  1. Nominal Voltage: Nominal voltage, limited and restricted approach boundaries, and PPE glove rating are also displayed on the label to help protect workers from electric shock.
  2. Arc Flash Boundary: An arc flash boundary is the distance at which the incident energy equals 1.2 cal/cm2, and arc-rated PPE is required for any employee within the arc flash boundary.
  3. At Least One of the Following:
    • Available incident energy and the corresponding working distance: Calculated incident energy is the amount of thermal energy (cal/cm2) at a distance from an electrical arc event and indicates the level of PPE required to protect workers.
    • Minimum arc rated clothing
    • Site specific PPE

If this information is not on the label, it should reference where you can find the arc flash study and get the information.

If you do not a location-specific arc flash label, then you might see a generic label. These generic labels typically mean an arc flash study has not been done, and there is a note on the bottom of these labels that says refer to the NFPA 70E requirements for PPE.

This can be confusing, so if you need any help with arc flash studies, trainings, labeling, PPE questions or anything else, please reach out to us at ErieTec.