Arc Flash Personal Protective Equipment

This Personal Protective Equipment provides protection after an arc flash incident has occurred and should be viewed as the last line of protection. Selection of the appropriate PPE for the task to be performed is based upon hazard categories found in NFPA 70E – 2004, which should appear on labeled electrical panels and equipment.

The following table is provided as a quick reference.  Workers must ensure that they have reviewed all appropriate safety requirements before work begins.

Personal Protective Equipment Requirements for Arc Flash Protection


Energy Level

PPE Requirements


≤2 cal/cm²

Non-melting or untreated natural fiber


4 cal/cm²

Fire Resistant (FR) shirt and pants


8 cal/cm²

Fire Resistant shirt and pants, cotton underwear


25 cal/cm²

Two layers Fire Resistant clothing, cotton underwear


40 cal/cm²

Fire Resistant shirt and pants, multilayer flash suit, cotton underwear.

Face protection includes face shield and/or safety glasses. Hand protection includes leather over rubber for arc flash protection. Leather work boots above 4 cal/cm².


Kelly States
Director of Campus Safety and Health

James McQuaid
Assistant Director, Occupational Safety