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  • When electrical goes bad

    These are photos of an explosion in some switchgear. These are not from a nuclear plant. The electrician's story is below.




    "Here are pictures of my close call with a 480 Volt 1200 Amp Main breaker that I was trying to trip out. On the first two attempts of pushing the trip button while standing off on the hinged side of the door nothing happened. On the third try it exploded and kept exploding for about thirty seconds. Instead of instantly tripping the upstream 4160 Volt Breaker, the buss bar connected to the top of the breaker had blown and melted open. Leaving the incoming feeders still energized because the trip relay on the 4160 Volt breaker had an incorrect trip set point.



    When the fire ball & gouging stopped I was able to crawl under the smoke and with my flash light try to find my partner who was standing ten feet away waiting for me to rack out the 480 Volt breaker so he could rack out the up stream 4160 Volt breaker. The fire ball was shooting directly at him and he was sprayed with sparks and hot molten metal. Thank God he was far enough away and was able to react quick enough to escape through the back door of the MCC.

    We lost sight of each other through the fire balls and thought the worst. I can't stress safety enough, had I been standing on the other side of the door or If Chris had walked toward me to see why it wasn't tripping. We would have both been seriously injured or killed. Having had this happen to both of us before we always expect the worst when doing switching and take every possible precaution to make sure everyone involved is out of harms way because you just never know when a Breaker may malfunction and you may never get a second chance. After we came back from first aid and came out of shock we put on a clean pair of shorts and called home. We left work early that day and couldn't wait to get home to see our families. I don't recall ever being so happy to wrap my arms around Debby and the kids and tell them how much I love them.

    We don't go to work every day thinking we might not make it home that night but we do spend a lot of time thinking about everything else but the job at hand. This has been a good reminder for me and hopefully all of you.....One second of complacency could result in a life time pain and suffering. We must all take the time to stop and think what could go wrong. Lets not only think of ourselves but of all the people that would be affected by any of us being injured."

    Obviously I didn't post the photos because of the size of the file. If anyone wants to see them. PM me your email address and I'll foward them to you.
    Last edited by gear junkie; 04-18-2008, 12:41 PM.
    Buy cheap, buy twice.

  • #2
    Re: When electrical goes bad

    Ben, Send em to me and I will resize em and post them for all to see.

    Josh

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: When electrical goes bad

      This isn't the same as what happened with the switchgear, but it shows what can happen when protective devices fail. Sub-Station transformer blowing up. Video from a distance. Think of the people that lived near it!!!
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BH5UudSEMQw


      The need for more high Voltage well engineered fusing. What a shame and think of the losses.
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eYUmd...eature=related
      Last edited by Woussko; 04-19-2008, 11:07 PM.

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      • #4
        Re: When electrical goes bad

        that was just amazing

        zzzzzzzaaaaaaaaaaaaaapppppppppppppp
        §m€llŸ™

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: When electrical goes bad

          intense gear, and your right we all leave in the am and take for granted no not even think twice we might not be coming back, very humbling indeed, easy to lose sight and get lost in between. glad all worked out.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: When electrical goes bad

            Sounds like an ARC Flash incident w/o seeing the photos.

            Here's what can happen;

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h10ALIpD0R4

            This is not staged, it really happened. We have used this video
            in our ARC Flash safety training for a couple years now.

            Whenever the electricians have to go in a hot cubicle >460V, they
            are dressed to the hilt in an ARC flash suit that looks like the bomb
            squad has arrived. I have a couple photos of them dressed out
            somewhere, I will hunt them down and post one or two.
            Last edited by Bob D.; 04-19-2008, 08:05 PM.
            ---------------
            Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
            ---------------
            “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
            ---------
            "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
            ---------
            sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

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            • #7
              Re: When electrical goes bad

              Heres The pics in a pdf.
              Attached Files

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              • #8
                Re: When electrical goes bad

                Here are several and with better audio. Crank up your sound and get ready. One blast was planned. They show it in slow motion which is very impressive of what can happen and why we must take safety seriously.

                http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SF5Hu...eature=related


                I wish I could find a really professional video of radio-TV station towers taking a direct hit lightning strike. To see such for real will leave you a very changed and fearful person to say the least. I'm talking about where you're a good 1/2 mile away so you can talk about it.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: When electrical goes bad

                  It took me some time since I've been working crazy hours the past couple months but here is a photo of an Arc Flash suit.
                  Attachment
                  Attached Files
                  ---------------
                  Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
                  ---------------
                  “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
                  ---------
                  "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
                  ---------
                  sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: When electrical goes bad

                    i was walking home from the store one day when a transfomer blew right above my head the **** fell 10 ft from me and lit a couple of trees on fire.
                    scary **** i almost lost my life that day...

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: When electrical goes bad

                      I have been working in the electrical /generating field for 6.5 yrs ,so I know exactly what that feels like when a 480v and/or 5kv (4160) breaker does (sounds like/feels like) when its decides to give up it's MOJO..

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