Logo
Electrical Safety
Home      FAQ
Our Frequently Asked Questions
» How did the Code change come about?
» What does the new Code state?
» How will this Code change affect the industry?
» Where do most accidents happen?
» What types of objects are commonly inserted into receptacles?
» Who is at risk?
» How severe are the injuries?
» How do tamper-resistant receptacles work?
» Are tamper-resistant receptacles 100 percent tamper-proof?
» Would tamper-resistant receptacles protect against partial plug insertion?
» Is it harder to insert or remove a plug from a tamper-resistant receptacle?
» Where's the proof that tamper-resistant receptacles offer greater protection?
» How much will it cost to install tamper-resistant receptacles?
» Can I retrofit an older house with tamper-resistant receptacles?
» Could tamper-resistant receptacles be used in correctional facilities?
» How do I identify tamper-resistant receptacles?
» Could tamper-resistant receptacles be used instead of GFCIs?
» How quickly might states and municipalities adopt the Code?
» How are electrical manufacturers preparing?
» Where are Tamper-Resistant Receptacles required?
» What if an appliance or luminaire is not available with Tamper-Resistant Receptacles?
» Are Tamper-Resistant Receptacles required in Hotels or Dormitories?



How did the Code change come about?
Answer: Approximately 2,400 children receive emergency room treatment every year for injuries caused by inserting objects into electrical receptacles, according to U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) data. This equates to about seven children each day. Injuries range from electric shock to first-, second- and third-degree burns. And, although rare, some cases prove fatal.

In response to these statistics, the National Electrical Code® (NEC) has been revised to require that all receptacles-or outlets-in new residential constructions be tamper resistant. Child safety presents a major concern for electrical manufacturers, and tamper-resistant receptacles have long been considered the most reliable means of protection. Although not widely used in homes, tamper-resistant receptacles have been required in pediatric care areas for years.

^ back to top


What does the new Code state?


How will this Code change affect the industry?


Where do most accidents happen?


What types of objects are commonly inserted into receptacles?


Who is at risk?


How severe are the injuries?


How do tamper-resistant receptacles work?


Are tamper-resistant receptacles 100 percent tamper-proof?


Would tamper-resistant receptacles protect against partial plug insertion?


Is it harder to insert or remove a plug from a tamper-resistant receptacle?


Where's the proof that tamper-resistant receptacles offer greater protection?


How much will it cost to install tamper-resistant receptacles?


Can I retrofit an older house with tamper-resistant receptacles?


Could tamper-resistant receptacles be used in correctional facilities?


How can I identify tamper-resistant receptacles?


Could tamper-resistant receptacles be used instead of GFCIs?


How quickly might states and municipalities adopt the Code?


How are electrical manufacturers preparing?


Where are Tamper-Resistant Receptacles required?
Answer: If you read the 2008 National Electrical Code section 406.11 Tamper-Resistant Receptacles in Dwelling Units verbatim,

“ In all areas specified in 210. 52, all 125-volt, 15- and 20-ampere receptacles shall be listed tamper-resistant receptacles.”

Therefore, any 125-volt 15- and 20-ampere receptacle installed in a kitchen, family room, dining room, living room, parlor, library, den, sunroom, bedroom, recreation room, or similar room or area of dwelling units, at countertops, in bathrooms, outdoor outlets, in laundry areas, hallways, in basements, and garages are required to be tamper resistant regardless of location. Because these are all areas specified in 210.52 and the current code language does not provide any exceptions.

For example here are some excerpts from Code Panel statements:

ROC Panel Statement “…The panel recognizes that not all receptacles listed within 210.52 are subject to child access. Yet, the overall material cost should outweigh the mind set of providing two different types of receptacles to the electricians in hopes that they would not accidentally install a standard receptacle in a location requiring the tamper-resistant type. . . .”

ROP statement by K. Kempel, “the Panel considered limiting the locations where tamper resistant receptacles are required. It considered locations such as the receptacle for the refrigerator, above stove for a microwave, above kitchen counters, in garages and outdoor locations. Limitations were not included to avoid potential installation errors and the minimal cost difference (based on the info in the substantiation).”

^ back to top


What if an appliance or luminaire is not available with Tamper-Resistant Receptacles?
Answer: It is strongly suggested that Section 90.4 be reviewed in the application and enforcement of the requirements of 406.11. The last paragraph of 90.4 states “This Code may require new products, constructions, or materials that may not yet be available at the time the Code is adopted. In such event, the authority having jurisdiction may permit the use of the products, constructions, or materials that comply with the most recent previous edition of this Code adopted by the jurisdiction.” This would appear to allow the AHJ to not require tamper resistant receptacles for receptacles contained within a luminaire, appliance or equipment if a tamper resistant receptacle for that installation is not yet available. Therefore if the receptacle configuration used in a luminaire, appliance, or piece of equipment is not manufactured as a tamper resistant receptacle, the AHJ would be allowed to use the previously adopted version of the NEC for that specific luminaire, appliance or piece of equipment.

^ back to top


Are Tamper-Resistant Receptacles required in Hotels or Dormitories?
Answer: This requirement is only applicable to dwelling units and a dwelling unit is defined by article 100:

“Dwelling Unit. A single unit, providing complete and independent living facilities for one or more persons, including permanent provisions for living, sleeping, cooking, and sanitation.”

The definition of a dwelling unit has a broad range of occupancies that may be interpreted as a dwelling; single family dwellings, two family dwellings, multi-family dwellings, dormitories, extended stay hotels and assisted living facilities to name a few.

Caution is suggested when applying the requirements of 406.11 to the dormitory and hotel type occupancies. Section 210.60 of the 08 NEC is where the specific requirements for receptacle placement for guest rooms or guest suites in hotels, motels, sleeping rooms in dormitories, and similar occupancies can be located. Even though this section requires receptacles installed in accordance with 210-52, not all dormitories and hotel rooms qualify as a dwelling unit.

Once these occupancies have permanent cooking, living, sleeping and sanitation, by the definition in article 100, it becomes a dwelling and the requirements of 406.11 can be applicable. As always the AHJ has the final interpretation.

^ back to top

 
GFCI and AFCIs


Statistics indicate that the number of deaths and injuries due to electrical hazards may be on the decline. Part of the reason for that may be related to the use of ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs) and arc fault circuit interrupters (AFCIs). GFCIs can protect against electrical shock, while AFCIs detect hazards often responsible for electrical fires.

To help keep your family safe from electrical hazards, increase your electrical safety awareness. Make sure you're using quality electrical safety products, such as GFCIs and AFCIs, to help protect against electrical shocks and fires.

GFCIs
One of the most important safety devices in your home is a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI). Estimates indicate that the installation of GFCIs have saved hundreds of lives and prevented thousands of injuries in the U.S. over the past 30 years.

GFCIs are designed to provide protection against electrical shock from ground faults, or leakage currents, which occur when the electrical current flows outside of the circuit conductors.

Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCIs) Must be Checked Regularly. There are four steps to this test. To begin, please click on the button where indicated.


AFCIs
Arc Fault Circuit Interrupters, or AFCIs, are electrical safety devices designed to prevent fires caused by dangerous electrical arcs. Arc faults are one of the major causes of the thousands of residential electrical fires that occur each year.

Use of new AFCI technology could prevent 50 to 75 percent of these fires, saving hundreds of lives, reducing thousands of injuries and nearly $1 billion in property damage annually.

A Letter from DuPont

At DuPont, special emphasis on electrical safety awareness at work and at home during the month of May has been an institution since 1990. This year, one of the company's manufacturing facilities promoted the benefits of AFCIs, resulting in this testimonial

Our house was built in 1976. After numerous remodeling projects over the years by different contractors, we decided that our house was a good candidate for AFCI installation. The AFCI project was costly about 530 or so for 16 circuits and it was tempting to back out, thinking it was "overkill.

But the day after the project was completed, one of the AFCIs tripped. We thought that the AFCI was faulty, but the electrician disagreed. An extensive four-hour investigation revealed an arcing hazard in our house! A negligent remodeling contractor made several wiring errors that were corrected during the investigation. The cause of the AFCI trip was loose wires in an outlet. I hope DuPont continues to share these valuable tips. This may have prevented a tragedy! I hope others give this serious consideration.
 
 
 
Thank You to the  National Electrical Manufacturers Association and Child safety awareness. org websites for the FAQs provided on this website
 
 
 
POWERED BY ABLAZE Web Sites