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Tip of the Week: Practicality Forms the Basis of NFPA 70E

March 30, 2015
Long-held safety practices are now part of this standard.

Many in the electrical industry believe that NFPA 70E presents all kinds of new requirements that just aren’t practical in the real world. This is a misconception. For one thing, NFPA 70E is a consensus standard; some long-held safety practices of the panel member companies are now found in this standard.

The colored maintenance stickers are an example of proven practices that made it into this standard. One of the panel member companies has been using this system for many years. It’s such a good idea that the panel adopted it into the standard.

Having a solid safety strategy provides a competitive advantage. Not just because it reduces the chance of worker injury and death, but because the same practices reduce the chance of catastrophic failure.

So practicality is a key theme in NFPA 70E. In fact, this is stated in its purpose: “The purpose of this standard is to provide a practical safe working area....” [90.1].

About the Author

Mark Lamendola

Mark is an expert in maintenance management, having racked up an impressive track record during his time working in the field. He also has extensive knowledge of, and practical expertise with, the National Electrical Code (NEC). Through his consulting business, he provides articles and training materials on electrical topics, specializing in making difficult subjects easy to understand and focusing on the practical aspects of electrical work.

Prior to starting his own business, Mark served as the Technical Editor on EC&M for six years, worked three years in nuclear maintenance, six years as a contract project engineer/project manager, three years as a systems engineer, and three years in plant maintenance management.

Mark earned an AAS degree from Rock Valley College, a BSEET from Columbia Pacific University, and an MBA from Lake Erie College. He’s also completed several related certifications over the years and even was formerly licensed as a Master Electrician. He is a Senior Member of the IEEE and past Chairman of the Kansas City Chapters of both the IEEE and the IEEE Computer Society. Mark also served as the program director for, a board member of, and webmaster of, the Midwest Chapter of the 7x24 Exchange. He has also held memberships with the following organizations: NETA, NFPA, International Association of Webmasters, and Institute of Certified Professional Managers.

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