Exclusion zones are a fundamental process step during the testing of a switchroom.

These steps are critical in managing risks during the testing and are one of the most reliable methods of providing a high level of personal protection.

Mechanical or Physical barriers are erected to form a suitable exclusion zone. Barriers and barricading should completely envelope the hazardous zone, with careful attention paid to the trafficable areas.

The type of barricading is dictated by the Testing scope and the work areas required.  In some instances, this must also conform to local legislative requirements.

Depending on the nature of the test, barricading may serve different purposes for example, during point-point verification of equipment wiring, suitable barricading serves to provide safe and unrestricted access in and around equipment for the testing personnel. However during Dielectric Withstand Testing (Hipot), barricading also serves to protect others from dangers of High Voltage.

Regardless of the Project, or the testing scope, there are a few key elements to ensure effectiveness of barricading:

  •  Communication to others (during pre-start or similar) of the exclusion zone.
  •  Signage attached to barricading detailing the hazard.
  • Contact details of the nominated testing lead noted on the barricading (using information tag or similar).
  •  Nominated entry/exit points.
  •  Removal of barricading and withdrawal of the exclusion zone once the hazard is no longer present/testing complete.

Lastly, it is crucial to ensure barricading/barriers are continuous around the excluded area. Access points are often overlooked, particularly in complex areas with multiple interfaces.

Within the EQ-House service model, we offer a well-resolved function of Project Auditing.  During these audits safety is a fundamental component for the clients reporting outcomes. Exclusion zones during testing and the methodology around how they are applied is taken seriously.  If you are unsure about how this process is being conducted on your site contact www.eq-house.com for an Audit.

Contact the team 1300 360 545.

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