Chromate [Cr(VI)] is a serious environmental pollutant, which is amenable to bacterial bioremediation. NfsA, the major oxygen-insensitive nitroreductase of Escherichia coli, is a flavoprotein that is able to reduce chromate to less soluble and less toxic Cr(III). We show that this process involves single-electron transfer, giving rise to a flavin semiquinone form of NfsA and Cr(V) as intermediates, which redox cycle, generating more reactive oxygen species (ROS) than a divalent chromate reducer, YieF. However, NfsA generates less ROS than a known one-electron chromate reducer, lipoyl dehydrogenase (LpDH), suggesting that NfsA employs a mixture of uni- and di-valent electron transfer steps. The presence of YieF, ChrR (another chromate reductase we previously characterized), or NfsA in an LpDH-catalysed chromate reduction reaction decreased ROS generation by c. 65, 40, or 20%, respectively, suggesting that these enzymes can pre-empt ROS generation by LpDH. We previously showed that ChrR protects Pseudomonas putida against chromate toxicity; here we show that NfsA or YieF overproduction can also increase the tolerance of E. coli to this compound.