ELECTRICAL ACCREDITATION TRAINING FOR THE NEW NF C 18-510 STANDARD

Electrical Accreditation Training for Non-Electricians

Electrical Accreditation B0 H0 H0V

B0 H0 H0V

Intended for non-electrical staff working in the vicinity of electrical installations.

Electrical Accreditation BS BE HE

BS BE HE

Intended for staff responsible for carrying out protective maneuvers and resets in electrical rooms in LV or HV, and performing basic operations on electrical installations or on electrical equipment.

Electrical Accreditation Training for Electricians

Electrical Accreditation B1 B2 BC BR

B1 B2 BC BR

Intended for electrician or electromechanical staff called to carry out lockout-tagout procedures, and/or supervise de-energized, non-live work, and perform general operations.

Electrical Accreditation B1 B2 BC BR H1 H2

B1 B2 BC BR H1 H2

Intended for electrical or electromechanical staff, working in LV and/or HV, tasked with carrying out lockout-tagout procedures, supervising de-energized, non-live work, performing general operations, and carrying out or organizing tests.

Electrical Accreditation Refresher Retraining

Accreditation Refresher Retraining Course for Non-Electricians

Refresher Retraining Course for Non-Electricians

Intended for non-electrical staff working in the vicinity of electrical installations and facing electrical hazards.

Accreditation Refresher Retraining Course for Electricians

Refresher Retraining Course for Electricians

Intended for electrical staff tasked with carrying out operations in low voltage and high voltage, LV & HV.

Electrical Accreditation Trainer Training Course

Accreditation Trainer Training Course

Training course to become a trainer

Intended for individuals wishing to learn teaching techniques and training methods in order to share their knowledge and know-how.

PROVISIONS OF THE LABOR CODE

The new legislative provisions for the prevention of electrical hazards seek to increase the safety of work carried out on electrical installations,or in their vicinity, by enforcing the mandatory electrical accreditation of operators.

Since July 1, 2011, only individuals who, after receiving preparatory training in the prevention of electrical hazards, have been accredited by their employer, are authorized to carry out electrical work.

A REGULATORY REQUIREMENT

Electrical accreditation training is part of the new legislative provisions establishing the restrictions set, on main contractors and employers, for the design, development, use, and operation of electrical installations (decrees no. 2010-1016, 2010- 1017, 1018 of August 30, and no. 2010-1118 of September 22, 2010).

These new legislative provisions establish safety tenets and objectives for anticipating electrical hazards, referencing standards for their implementation.

Previous labor regulations (decree no. 88-1056 of November 14,1988, amended) did not require mandatory accreditation for work on electrical installations or in their vicinity. The bulletin of February 6, 1989, based on the UTE C 18-510 publication, only recommended the process of accreditation.

As of July 1, 2011, electrical accreditation training has become alegal obligation under articles R. 4544-9 to R. 4544-11 of the Labor Code, issued by decree no. 2010 – 1118 of September 22, 2010.

An ancillary obligation was imposed on January 1, 2013 for the accreditation of workers tasked with carrying out live electrical work who, in applying preventive principles, are restricted to situations where the installation’s lockout-tagout or protection by obstacle, removal or isolation, have been unsuccessful in eliminating electrical hazards.

The workers concerned will only be accredited after receiving certification issued by an accredited certification body. An ordinance will establish the competencies required of these employees, the evaluation criteria used by certification bodies, and the reference standards for the accreditation of certification bodies.

THE NF C 18-510 STANDARD, A TECHNICAL REFERENT

The NF C 18-510 standard, approved on December 21, 2011(2), completes this regulatory framework. In effect, articles R. 4544-9 and R. 4544-3 of the Labor Code underscore that the employer is to deliver, maintain, and renew the accreditation of workers, based on the standards referenced in an ordinance from the Ministries of Labor and Agriculture. The ordinance of April 26, 2012, which came into force on May 6, 2012, references the NF C 18-510 standard approved on December 21, 2011, defining the scope of the work activities concerned, and detailing the methods prescribed for carrying out these operations.

The accreditation process described in the standard is not enforced; the rule constitutes a technical referent, the application of which implies the regulatory framework’s compliance with legislative obligations.

It should be noted that the scope of application of the standard is wider than that of the Labor Code, because the standard encompasses the operations covered in the Labor Code, and those relating to electrical power distribution works falling under decree no 82-167 of February 16, 2012.

IMPLEMENTATION OF THE REGULATORY FRAMEWORK

To reflect the dates of approval of the standard and of publication of the ordinance referencing it (later dates than that of entry into force of the decree), the Ministry of Labor has provided, in a bulletin, (3) a four-year moratorium, from July 1, 2011 – until July 1, 2015 – to grant employers the time to gradually incorporate employees into the accreditation process based on the standard.

Accreditation certificates issued between July 1st, 2011 and December 26, 2011 (date of publication of the NF C 18-510 standard) remain valid for three years (the accreditation renewal interval recommended in the standard).

In every case, the employer will have to oversee that workers participating in the same operation are accredited for the same standards.

ELECTRICAL ACCREDITATION : WHO ISSUES IT ?

Under the approved C 18-510 standard, accreditation is « the recognition, on the part of the employer, that a person under his authority is fully competent to accomplish the tasks entrusted to him in full safety with respect to electrical hazards ».

This requirement affects both private-sector employers, and those subject to the Labor Code, as well as state and territorial public services.

The employer responsible for accreditation may be, depending on the legal circumstances of the worker, an external company, a company using the workers of a temporary employment agency (although the latter is responsible for training them in electrical safety),or the hosting company, in the case of apprentices and interns.

ELECTRICAL OPERATIONS AND INSTALLATIONS COVERED

The operations defined in articles R. 4544-2 and R. 4544-3 of the Labor Code, and in the C 18-510 standard, can be of an electrical or non-electrical nature, and carried out on electrical installations or in their vicinity, whether said installations are permanent or temporary.

The works carried out on electrical installations are those in the high and low voltage domains (de-energized or live work, maneuvers, tests, measurements, verifications), and in the low voltage domain (operations).

Operations in the vicinity of electrical installations encompass operations of an electrical and non-electrical nature, carried out around live bare parts within a defined area, the size of which varies according to the voltage domain (an ordinance will define the dimensions of said areas).

THE APPROACH TO ELECTRICAL ACCREDITATION

Analysis of the activities, skills, and competencies of the worker; training, issuance of the accreditation and a provisions booklet; renewal and monitoring of the accreditation.

Pursuant to article L. 4121-4, the employer takes into account the nature of the activities of the enterprise, and the competencies of the worker, to implement anticipative measures before assigning tasks to the worker.

The accreditation issued by the company stipulates the nature of the operations the worker is authorized to carry out within the restrictions of the attributions entrusted to him (art. R. 4544-10).

In order to determine what accreditation grade to issue, the company considers the activities of the worker in question. It takes into account the type of operation (electrical or non-electrical), the worker’s role, the nature of the operations (lockout-tagout, works, tests…), the particularities of the installation, and the conditions in which the work is performed.

The level of accreditation held by a worker takes into account the activities assigned to him and the electrical environment. It is identified by a coded symbol consisting in three alphanumeric characters with a possible additional mention or attribute. The accreditation symbol, defined in the standard, is suited to the nature of the operations and to the voltage domain of the electrical installations.

The employer must also consider the technical competencies of the worker to be accredited (professional certificates, diplomas), as well as his/her particular skills (experience, attitude, medical fitness). The employer ensures, in particular, that the worker assigned to these operations has been declared as fit by an occupational physician.

He makes sure that the activities, competencies and skills of the worker in question are all in alignment.

He determines the type of training required to prevent any applicable electrical hazards. This pre-accreditation training covers the general obligation of providing safety training for electrical hazards at the time of hiring, after each change of workstation, and to all temporary employment agency workers (article L. 4141-2 of the Labor Code).

The Health, Safety and Working Conditions Committee is consulted on the safety training program established by the employer (art. L. 4143-1), and participates in its preparation (art R. 4143-1). The training imparted for electrical accreditation is both theoretical and practical. It addresses the hazards associated with electricity, and the measures to be taken for safe operation in work activities (art. R. 4544-10).

For the ease of employers, the standard provides knowledge repositories for the initial training and for subsequent retraining.

At the end of the accreditation training, the National Center for Safety and Environmental Training (C.N.F.S.E by its initials in French) evaluates the theoretical and practical knowledge of the trainee, and issues an opinion.

The employer takes this opinion into account before accrediting the worker in question (examples provided in the standard).

He gives the accredited worker a provisions booklet based on the prescriptions pertaining to the C18-510 standard, complemented, if necessary, with safety instructions specific to the work activity at hand (art. R. 4544-10).

The employer also provides any appropriate personal protective equipment that may be necessary.

The company makes sure that accredited workers always have the competencies and skills necessary to safely carry out their duties in their work environment.

The worker’s electrical accreditation must be valid at the start of each work activity.

Every year, the company ensures that its accreditation requirements are aligned with the foreseeable evolution of works to be undertaken.

The accreditation expires on a predetermined date, as well as in the event of modifications to the installation, to work methods, etc. The retraining frequency recommended in the standard is every three years (two years in cases of occasional practice).