Q.
Is a disconnecting means for an outdoor spa or hot tub at a single-family dwelling required to be located within sight of the unit?

A. Per 680.12 and 680.42, a maintenance disconnecting means shall be installed within sight of spa and hot tub equipment. It shall be located not less than 5 feet horizontally from the inside walls of the spa or hot tub, unless separated by a solid fence, wall, or other permanent barrier [680.22(C)].

In other than a single-family dwelling, a clearly labeled emergency spa or hot tub water recirculation and jet system shutoff shall also be supplied. The emergency shutoff shall be readily accessible to the users and located not less than 5 feet away, but adjacent to and within sight of the spa or hot tub (680.41). To meet the emergency shutoff requirement, you could use the maintenance disconnecting means required by 680.12 or a pushbutton that controls a relay and is located in accordance with 680.41.

The emergency shutoff is meant to protect equipment users. Deaths and injuries have occurred in less than 3 feet of water because individuals became stuck to the water intake opening. This requirement applies to spas and hot tubs installed indoors as well as outdoors.

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