Which is Safer, a Task-Based or Daily Wear Approach to AR Clothing?

Arc Flash Daily Wear Programs 1 of 5

This is the first post in a series of five posts comparing and contrasting task-based and daily wear approaches to arc-rated (AR) clothing programs. Next up (coming soon – be sure to check back!) will be posts taking a closer look at issues like liability, challenges with layering, monitoring and productivity, and key takeaways.

As we saw in our last post, one of the earliest decisions you will make in crafting your protective clothing program is whether a “daily wear” or “task-based”  approach to arc-rated flame resistant (AR) clothing is the right fit for your company.

Generally, the best approach for your company will depend on how often your workers are completing work in an energized environment. A task-based program can be utilized when workers do not frequently do energized work, while a daily wear program is important when energized work is completed throughout the day.

Sounds pretty simple, right? But be careful not to oversimplify this important decision.

Though compliance and worker safety can be achieved by both task-based and daily-wear approaches, they are not necessarily created equal.

Task-based programs have the benefit of lower initial cost by virtue of providing a single coverall instead of multiple (usually 5) AR clothing per employee, but add significant risk and longer term costs in the form of liability, underlayers, heat stress, monitoring, and productivity, among others.

As a result, the majority of companies currently in compliance with NFPA 70E choose not to rely on task-based systems. Instead they specify AR as the only acceptable work uniform for employees and contractors working on energized electrical equipment. And, many companies who initially selected task-based programs are now switching to daily wear approaches.

Follow along with our series (new posts coming soon!) to learn more:

Feel overwhelmed at the idea of requiring workers to report to work in AR? Have no fear. Find out about a best-practice approach that minimizes costs and headaches.

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