Hazardous location lighting illuminating production plant for crude oil and gas

Demystifying Hazardous Location Lighting: A Complete Breakdown for Safety-Conscious Industries

When it comes to lighting in hazardous locations, safety is the top priority. These locations, such as oil refineries, chemical plants, and mining sites, are at risk for explosions and fires due to the presence of flammable gases, vapors, and dust. In order to ensure the safety of workers and the environment, it is crucial to have proper hazardous location lighting. In this guide, we will discuss the basics of hazardous location lighting and the different types of lighting available.

What is Hazardous Location Lighting?

Hazardous location lighting refers to lighting fixtures that are specifically designed and certified for use in hazardous environments. These fixtures are built to withstand extreme conditions and prevent the ignition of flammable substances. They are also designed to minimize the risk of electrical shock and damage.

Types of Hazardous Location Lighting

Intrinsically Safe Lighting

Intrinsically safe lighting is designed to prevent the release of enough energy to ignite flammable substances. These lights are typically used in areas where there is a high concentration of flammable gases or vapors. They are also commonly used in confined spaces, such as tanks and pipelines. Intrinsically safe lighting is often the preferred choice for hazardous locations as it eliminates the risk of electrical sparks.

Explosion Proof Lighting

Explosion proof lighting is designed to contain any potential explosion within the fixture itself. These lights are typically used in areas where there is a high risk of explosion, such as oil refineries and chemical plants. They are built with heavy-duty materials and are able to withstand extreme temperatures and pressure.

Hazardous Location LED Lighting

LED lighting is becoming increasingly popular in hazardous locations due to its energy efficiency and long lifespan. These lights are also able to withstand extreme temperatures and are less likely to break or shatter, making them a safer option for hazardous environments. Additionally, LED lights do not emit UV or infrared radiation, making them suitable for use in areas where sensitive equipment is present.

Certification and Ratings

When choosing hazardous location lighting, it is important to look for fixtures that are certified for use in hazardous environments. The most common certification for hazardous location lighting is the Underwriters Laboratories (UL) certification. This certification ensures that the lighting fixtures have been tested and meet the necessary safety standards.

In addition to certification, hazardous location lighting also has different ratings based on the type of hazardous environment it can be used in. These ratings include Class, Division, and Group. The Class rating refers to the type of hazardous material present, while the Division rating indicates the likelihood of the hazardous material being present. The Group rating specifies the type of hazardous material present, such as gases, vapors, or dust.


Hazardous location lighting is a crucial aspect of safety in hazardous environments. By understanding the different types of lighting available and their certifications and ratings, you can ensure that your workplace is equipped with the proper lighting to keep workers and the environment safe. Remember to always consult with a certified professional when choosing hazardous location lighting for your specific needs.

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