Everyone makes mistakes. Some are just funnier than others.
One of our designers started a pre-job walkthrough for a relighting job at a multi-story production facility in the basement where the main disconnect switch and first set of panelboards were located. As he gave his introductory comments to a group of about 20 people, the local pressure-demand-controlled air compressor came on, effectively drowning him out. He tried to keep talking, but to no avail, so after a few minutes he finally walked over to the compressor and killed it with the main switch. He was able to continue with the walkthrough, but after reaching the second floor he realized that the building, which had been busy with machinery noise, was slowly starting to quiet down. By turning off the air compressor, he had effectively shut down the rest of the machinery once the reserve tank ran out. He stopped working for us that afternoon.
While working in a new high-tech office reception area that needed a circuit added in the open-bar joist ceiling next to several high-definition television monitors for product info, I located a one-man lift under the j-box location. My fellow electrician willingly jumped in and headed up to complete the install, but on the way down, the control cable for the remote somehow got pinched and shorted out, sending him on an up-and-down ride for three minutes. Each time up, he narrowly missed the 52-inch monitors. I cut the battery cables, but it was too late for my friend — no less than 20 employees in a nearby conference room had something to laugh about for the next several days.
Brooklyn Center, Minn.
Illustrations by Clint Metcalf