SAN DIEGO - Trade Service Corp. has announced a partnership to integrate TRA-SER PRO, its 1.5-million item electronic price book, with Dexter+Chaney's Forefront Construction Management Software program.

Trade Service works with leading software and system vendors to establish compatibility with the estimating, purchasing and billing systems most commonly used by industry professionals.

Users of Forefront will be able to access TRA-SER Pro, which automatically maintains and updates current price and product information in their Forefront database with pricing from their local distributors, streamlining the estimating to purchasing to billing cycle.

LITTLE NECK, N.Y.- A new study from the Leviton Institute, the educational and training arm of Leviton Manufacturing, has found that a high percentage of ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs) installed in homes didn't work when they were tested, and might not protect people from an electrical ground fault.

A ground-fault can occur when current leaks from an electrical circuit, for example, through damaged wiring or a defective appliance. GFCIs are designed to detect ground faults and shut down the circuit if they occur. The GFCI Circuit Breaker Field Study, sponsored by The Leviton Institute, reviewed data from 13,380 building inspections and found that on average, 15% of GFCIs were inoperative when tested. The study found a much higher incidence of failure in areas where lightning is prevalent. In those regions, as many as 58.2% of GFCIs were found to be inoperative.

"GFCIs don't last forever," said Steve Campolo, lead investigator in the study. "Voltage surges from lightning, utility switching and other sources all take their toll on the devices. That's why Underwriters Laboratories requires that GFCIs be tested monthly." The results from the study additionally suggest that many homeowners either aren't testing the devices or are ignoring the results.

Traditional GFCI designs may compound the problem. For example, most GFCIs will continue to deliver power even if ground-fault protection has been compromised. "It's natural for users to assume that all is well if the GFCI is still delivering power," Campolo said. New "lockout-action" GFCI receptacles now coming on the market offer greater protection. If the GFCI is tripped, it can't be reset unless it's working properly.

The study used data collected by home inspectors who met membership requirements of the American Society of Home Inspectors. The Leviton Institute is the educational arm of The Leviton Manufacturing Co., Little Neck, N.Y. Its mission is to educate consumers, specifiers and others about the benefits of today's electrical wiring devices and systems and to promote the safe use of electrical devices in the home. Leviton Manufacturing Co. offers a wide variety of industrial, commercial and residential wiring products and offers its distributor customers a full range of training, education, marketing, merchandising and other customer-driven support programs. Equipped with the latest in R&D and design and testing facilities, Leviton continually introduces high-quality devices that set the pace of progress in the industry.

For more information, contact Leviton Manufacturing Co., Inc., 59-25 Little Neck Parkway, Little Neck, N.Y., 11362-2591; Phone: (800) 323-8920; Tech Line: (800) 824-3005; Fax: (800) 832-9538.