Update: Priest Rapids Dam Investigation by L&I Completed


The Washington Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) completed their investigation of the arc flash incident at Priest Rapids Dam that occurred in October 2015. L&I determined that the arc flash could have been prevented had the employer made sure certain safeguards were put in place. The five serious citations are listed here:

  • The employer did not ensure the use of lock-out/tag-out safety devices to prevent inadvertently closing a breaker that could cause an arc flash.
  • Employees were not briefed on the circuit conditions that affected them and exposed them to risk of arc flash burns and electrocution.
  • Employees were not aware that the lock-out/tag-out devices had been removed from the circuit.
  • One worker was not wearing fire-resistant clothing while working on the hydro-electric equipment.
  • The employer did not provide any records to show it was in compliance with the state regulation on protecting workers from injury due to hazardous energy.

Grant County Public Utility District #2 was fined the maximum penalty of $7000 for each citation for a total fine of $35,000.

See our previous blog on the October incident.


Hugh Hoagland

Hugh Hoagland

Hugh Hoagland is the foremost tester of clothing and PPE exposed to electrical arcs and is an arc flash expert. Read more about Hugh.

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