Code Clusters is a fond look back at some of the most interesting and outlandish Code violations published in the pages of EC&M magazine over the past 15 years — the item below is the first in a series of 10. Questions? Comments? We'd love to hear your feedback! Post your thoughts in the box below.

NEC Violations Illustrated - Student

A Nearly Wired Student on Newbury Street

All references are based on the 1996 edition of the NEC.

About a mile of sidewalk restaurants and storefronts grace this prestigious street in Boston. I found these exposed live wires on a typical weekend photo shoot. This broken box and duplex receptacle sat at the base of a live tree.

This Newbury Street receptacle supplied the decorative lighting string that was run up into the tree. There are many of these light strings supplied in the same manner that are used on the trees along this street, but this was the worst one of all. Many of the others were broken, taped up as a temporary measure, or covered up with a makeshift shield by someone probably hoping they would remain safe. This problem is evident around the country in most major cities.

This college student was sitting with his back touching this box, with his dog at his feet. This is an electrical accident waiting to happen.

Sec. 410-15(h) of the 1999 NEC allows outdoor lighting fixtures and associated equipment to be supported by trees, and Sec. 370-23 covers the proper box support.

See next violation: No Room for Growth