How well do you know the Code? Think you can spot violations the original installer either ignored or couldn't identify? Here's your chance to moonlight as an electrical inspector and second-guess someone else's work from the safety of your living room or office. Joe, who has a knack for finding shoddy electrical work, did the dirty work and found this mess. Now it's your turn to identify the violation.

 

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This conduit body adjacent to a sidewalk has obviously suffered damage from something over the years. Maybe a snow blower rammed into it. Or maybe a car bumper hit it at one time. Whatever the case, electrical equipment should be installed in safe locations, with a thought on how to protect it from physical damage.

 

Find the Answer

Section 110.27 of the NEC covers the guarding of live parts. As per 110.27(B), when installing equipment in locations where electrical equipment is likely to be exposed to physical damage, "enclosures or guards shall be so arranged and of such strength as to prevent such damage."

Section 230.50(A) covers protection against physical damage for underground service-entrance conductors. This requirement references Section 300.5, which focuses on underground installations. More specifically, 300.5(4) notes "where the enclosure or raceway is subject to physical damage, the conductors shall be installed in rigid metal conduit, intermediate metal conduit, Schedule 80 PVC conduit, or equivalent. Although this installation looks like it met this rule originally, it was still damaged. Go figure!

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