What is an E-Field?

 

Keeping workers safe when they’re in close proximity to power lines can be a challenge. In most cases, it requires complete concentration on the task at hand, awareness of the high voltage line as well as the proximity to it. At Sigalarm, our high voltage warning systems use e-fields to detect the presence of high voltage power lines in an effort to keep people and equipment from running afoul of a power line.

SIG-What-are-efields

What is an E-Field?

An e-field is an invisible field emitted by every above-ground AC power line. The E-field’s size and shape depends on the line’s voltage and configuration.

How is an E-Field Used?

High voltage proximity alarms, like those manufactured by Sigalarm, can use the E-field to identify proximity to a power line. Identifying proximity to the power line is the first step in keeping workers and equipment safe.

The presence of an E-field is only one part of the safety equation; distance to the power line is a common method of avoidance.

Why Distance Matters

According to OSHA, there are different minimum safe distances for certain pieces of equipment and on the voltage of the power line. Safe distances can vary by over 10ft by equipment being operated on same voltage lines.  The potential of an accident can be deeply reduced by maintaining a minimum safe distance from the power line. When using a proximity alarm, it is always recommended that a safety spotter is present as well. With an alarm and the spotter working in tandem, keeping workers safe from overhead power lines is a much easier proposition.

Heeding the Alarm

The Sigalarm high voltage proximity alarms, which can be mounted to all types of equipment, alert workers to the presence of an overhead power line. Once a power line has been detected, it is then up to the members of the job site to cease their work and determine the safest way to continue without endangering anyone.

At Sigalarm, we’ve been helping to keep work site’s safe for over four decades. Our line of high voltage power line warning devices is versatile enough to work with multiple types of equipment. Our warning devices offer standard alert options including audible and visual alarms. Auto shutdown is available with every model we sell.

OSHA is clear in specifying “intended use.”  It is our goal to educate anyone who works around power lines that the intended use for proximity alarms is E-field detection and warning to overhead AC power lines and not distance measurement.

To find out more about how Sigalarm can help to keep your job sites safe, please contact us today for information.