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May-June 2008
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Inside the Non-Certified Product

by Greg Smith

In the product safety profession, we consider the six hazards: shock, energy, fire, injury, chemical and radiation. Of these six hazards, shock is the most common, the most deadly, and the most difficult to prevent. Energy can melt a bracelet or ring, but does not generally cause the heart to stop. To a great degree, fire can be extinguished or avoided by leaving the area quickly, and mechanical product injuries are less common and not as often fatal. Chemical and radiation hazards are less common still, and have available more countermeasures for remedies and treatment. Shock is the invisible enemy, the deadly surprise waiting for the unprepared and the unprotected. Read more

Perspectives on PV

* Questions from the AHJ – To Fuse or Not to Fuse?

by John Wiles

Nearly everyone agrees that the National Electrical Code gets better with every edition. However, new technologies like photovoltaic (PV) power systems and fuel cells are still evolving with new equipment, new wiring procedures, and new installation requirements being developed every week. With new inspectors and new installers coming into the field every day, questions are bound to arise. The question addressed below is very common and is frequently posed by both oldtimers and newcomers. The answer is not directly found in the Code but must be evaluated on a case-by-case basis by examining the system. Read more

Maintenance Concerns Should Be a Call to Action for Electrical Inspectors

by Joseph Weigel

Simply put, the lifeblood of industrial facilities is electrical power. Production processes, environmental controls and security, lighting and safety systems would grind to a halt without a clean, reliable and continuously available flow of electricity. Read more

Concrete-Encased Electrodes – Let’s Go Vertical!

by Steve Douglas

The year was 2005. It was a typical spring afternoon in this typical Midwest town of Anywhere, USA. The skies were a cloudy gun-barrel gray as the light rain fell and the thunder rolled in the distant background. Suddenly, without warning, the rain intensifies and the skies turn darker and darker. That distant thunder is suddenly not so distant and is now all around with almost deafening crackling from the skies to the ground (or is it ground to sky)? Read more

Third-Party Electrical Testing – What Inspectors Should Know

by Jim White

If safe, reliable operation of a newly-installed electrical power system and related components is to be achieved, several key components are required: The power system and components must be designed and engineered correctly. Quality equipment should be procured. Read more

Field Evaluation of Uncertified or Modified Products

by Chuck Mello

Section 110.2 of the National Electrical Code (NEC) establishes the requirement for installations and equipment to be approved and by definition, this means "acceptable to the authority having jurisdiction.” The Canadian Electrical Code (CEC) has a more general requirement for approval when dealing with electrical products. Read more

What Goes into a Listing and Why It is Important

by Thomas Lichtenstein

Equipment that is listed by a certification organization such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL) provides peace of mind to millions of consumers, workers, installers, authorities having jurisdiction (AHJs) and insurance companies that the equipment has complied with established safety requirements. Read more

Take Advantage of Employee Financial Education

by Jesse Abercrombie

In the old days, if you worked for a company, your retirement income would likely have been in the form of a pension, with the amount based on your income level and years of service. Apart from those factors, you had little control over the size of your pension benefits. Read more

Product Certification and Electrical Safety

by Darren Margerison

When undertaking any electrical installation work, it is imperative to ensure that the electrical equipment that is being installed and connected within the installation is of a type that is safe and will function in the manner required by the user. Many electrical contractors and licensed electrical inspectors are being confronted by product that is questionable and may have been installed in a manner which is not in the manner intended by the manufacturer. Read more



Electrical safety must be practiced and taught

by James W. Carpenter

May is Electrical Safety Month. Each year electrical safety is stressed during this month. This year even more emphasis should be placed on electrical safety, not only in the workplace but in our homes as well. The Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) reports that most deaths and injuries caused by electrical hazards are preventable. Read more

Canadian Code

A Look at Continuous and Non-Continuous Loads

by Leslie Stoch

This article discusses Canadian Electrical Code Rule 8-104 Maximum Circuit Loading. The rule is significant, since it defines how electrical circuits and equipment must be rated and it provides limitations on the continuous loading of electrical equipment. According to the CEC, loads that are ON for a long time are considered to be continuous. Read more

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