Streamlight - Safety Ratings Explained

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Any flashlight that will be used in a hazardous environment or confined space should be properly tested to meet or exceed all applicable safety standards for those locations. When selecting a flashlight, make sure it carries the proper approval ratings. Choosing the correct light for your application requires a thorough understanding of your working environment, and a realistic expectation of how a properly selected flashlight will operate in those conditions.

What Is a Hazardous Location?

Hazardous locations, or potentially explosive atmospheres, are areas where fire or explosion hazards may exist due to the presence of ignitable concentrations of flammable gases, liquids, vapors, dusts or ignitable fibers or flyings. These locations are classified or “grouped” according to the properties of the flammable materials that may be present and the likelihood of flammable concentrations.

The National Electric Code (NEC) defines hazardous locations classifications and protection techniques. The basic designation is by “class” and “division.” There are three classes characterized by the type of material present. Class I locations are made hazardous by the presence of flammable gases, liquids or vapors. Class II locations can be described as hazardous because of the presence of combustible dusts. Class III locations contain easily ignitable fibers or flyings. “Division” refers to the likelihood that ignitable concentrations of flammable materials are present in a given area. Division 1 designates an environment where ignitable concentrations of flammable gases, liquids, vapors or dusts can exist some of the time or all of the time under normal operating conditions or where easily ignitable fibers and flyings are manufactured, handled or used. Division 2 locations are areas where ignitable concentrations are NOT likely to exist under normal operating conditions or where Class III materials are stored or handled...

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