OHS Code Explanation Guide

Published Date: July 01, 2009
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Part 40 Utility Workers – Electrical

Explanation of Rules Referenced from the ECUC, Second Edition

Rule 4-088 Installing protective grounds

Subrule 4-088(1)

Protective grounds are installed to protect workers from electrical equipment or lines that could become unintentionally energized e.g. accidentally energized by a worker, through induction, by lightning, etc. The employer is required to have procedures for installing protective grounds. As required by section 8 of the OHS Regulation, the procedures must be in writing and available to workers at the work site affected by the procedures.

Subrules 4-088(2) and 4-088(3)

Live line tools must be used when installing protective grounds. These tools protect the worker performing the work by isolating him or her from direct contact with ungrounded conductors.

However, some switchgear assemblies eliminate the need to use live line tools when grounding. Examples include grounding switches in substations, grounding buggies on SF6 and submersible switchgear, and network transformers.

Subrules 4-088(4) and 4-088(5)

Grounds must be installed between the point on the electrical equipment or line where the worker is working and every potential source of energy that may feed energy into the system being worked on. This is to protect the worker in case any equipment or lines become energized. This grounding must be done in accordance with procedures prepared by the employer.

When equipotential bonding and grounding techniques are used this places the worker at the same potential as the electrical equipment or lines that are being worked on.

Subrule 4-088(6)

Because it is possible for there to be electrical potential on the isolated circuit, the ground must be connected first to prevent having a live conductor in the work area.

Subrule 4-088(7)

“Stations” means locations such as substations, generating stations and switch yards. Switches may make grounding easier to complete.