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Code Alert: New York, 11 March 2010

New York City Council Considers Adoption of the 2008 National Electrical Code

City Councilor Erik Martin Dilan, by request of Mayor Bloomberg, introduced to the City Council proposed legislation to update the New York City Electrical Code. The proposed legislation introduced on March 3, 2010 was assigned “Introduction Number 0064-2010” and referred to the Committee on Housing and Buildings. Public committee hearing(s) will be held on Intro 64-2010, where the bill may be amended. The committee will then vote on the final version of the bill and if successful, the bill will be sent to the full Council for discussion and a final vote. If passed by the Council, it is then sent to the Mayor, who also holds a public hearing after which he either signs or vetoes the bill.

Intro 64-2010 includes adoption of the 2008 National Electrical Code with amendments and also modifications to the administrative provisions. If passed, the bill will take effect on July 1, 2010. There will be a phase-in period from July 1, 2010 through December 31, 2010. Electrical work may be performed either in accordance with the existing electrical code or in accordance with the newly adopted code. On and after January 1, 2011, all electrical work must be performed in accordance with the newly adopted electrical code.

Included in the Bill are proposed new amendments, such as a revision to the definition of “Coordination (Selective)”. The amendment adds a new sentence at the end of the definition to read as follows: “For the purposes of this code two overcurrent protective devices shall be deemed selectively coordinated if their respective time-current characteristic curves do not intersect at a time of 0.1 seconds (6 cycles on 60 Hz systems) or longer.” Other amendments regarding selective coordination were made to 240.12, and Section 700.27, which requires emergency system overcurrent devices to be selectively coordinated in the overcurrent range with all supply side overcurrent protective devices.

Other new amendments include:

A new subsection (H) was added to 110.26, requiring all network compartments to have at least two means of access, which access an area that leads to a legal exit.

Several amendments were added regarding the existing requirement relative to voltage drop. Where compliance with the applicable Energy Conservation Code is mandated, voltage drop requirements of the Energy Code shall apply.

New amendments to the requirements for type MC Cable with an outer jacket of PVC were added. A new subsection 330.12(4) was added to prohibit the use of the cable, in residential buildings exceeding three floors above grade. Another amendment prohibits the installation of the cable, in nonresidential buildings unless concealed within non-plenum walls, floors and ceilings where the walls, floors and ceilings provide a thermal barrier of material that has at least a one hour rated assembly.

Amendments requiring special construction of luminaires have been deleted.

The use of liquidtight flexible nonmetallic conduit is prohibited in agricultural buildings.

Approval of all wiring within mobile and manufactured homes, including branch circuit wiring are subject to the installation and permitting requirements of the NYC Electrical Code.

New requirements for sidewalk shed lighting installations, such as GFCI and minimum wire size have been added to Article 590.

A new amendment was added requiring GFCI protection be provided for receptacles required per 620.23(C) for elevators.

Amendments limiting underwater luminaires to 15 volts have been deleted.

The installation of Fire Alarm Systems is now covered by Article 760, which has been extensively modified to incorporate the previous requirements of RS 17-3, RS 17-3A, RS 17-3B and RS17-3C of the New York City Building Code.

Contact: Gil Moniz: gilmoniz@nema.org


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