Arc Flash Labeling Requirements - EPSCO

At a minimum, these labels must contain:

  • The nominal system voltage
  • The arc flash boundary
  • AND at least one of the following:
      • The available incident energy and the corresponding working distance
      • The arc flash PPE category found in the PPE category tables
      • The minimum arc rating of clothing
      • The site-specific level of PPE


There are two (2) types of labels, depending on whether or not you’ve completed an arc flash study.

  1. With an arc flash study, labels will be created specifically for your equipment based on an incident energy rating and/or PPE category.
  2. Without an arc flash study, you’re limited to generic tables requiring additional calculations that reference the NFPA 70E.

If you have a label on a panel that predates the 2015 NFPA 70E code cycle, it will display the PPE category method with a rating of 1-4. Anything short of the arc flash threshold is listed as N/A. This label likely does NOT meet the arc flash labeling requirements.

Following the 2015 code cycle, labels include an incident energy rating based on a calculated distance (usually 18 inches). These newer labels display the energy level of an arc flash hazard, the date the calculation was performed, voltage class system information, and voltage class panel markings to indicate a unique energy level specific to that panel. Shock-related hazards, safe working distances, and arc flash radius are also calculated.

Check the latest version of NFPA 70E HERE.

After 2015, labels cannot include categories unless an incident energy calculation has been performed. This means that generic labels cannot include PPE category ratings anymore, and the NFPA 70E must be referenced to perform calculations for every panel each time work is about to be performed to determine the appropriate PPE. This often leads to people overdoing it with PPE, and overdressing can make work more difficult and time-consuming. If your labels are out of date or compliance, contact us, and we can discuss an update.



You can find labels for purchase online —

But remember that if you buy these labels, it is a violation of code to write a PPE category on the label without a calculated incident energy level that is part of an arc flash study. Generic labels can only refer workers to NFPA 70E tables, but the tables cannot be included on the labels themselves.