How trapped key interlocking protects switchgear workers

The ability to work across HV, MV and LV switchgear means that a trapped key interlocking system can be used as a single solution to provide personnel safety and ensure equipment is used in the correct way.

Major switchgear manufacturers recognise the safety benefits that trapped key interlocks provide

Major switchgear manufacturers recognise the safety benefits that trapped key interlocks provide and design equipment to be able to accept this safety technology across their own breakers, isolators, switch disconnectors and earth switch mechanisms.

When used with switchgear, a well-designed trapped key interlocking scheme:

  • Forces operators to follow a predetermined switching schedule. This ensures the safe operation of switchgear and eliminates the risk of human error while switching between supplies.
  • Allows less-skilled operators to be able to switch between supplies comfortably as they are forced to follow a certain switching schedule, which enforces the safe operating process.
  • Protects workers by ensuring that personnel cannot access potentially dangerous areas without the switchgear system being put into a safe condition.

Trapped key interlocks provide a high level of safety for both operators and equipment as the operating procedure has to be strictly followed and cannot be circumvented.

By: Adam Felton, Technical Marketing, Castell Safety International Ltd.

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