Another June has come and gone, and now we’re on the backside of 2019! For those of us at NFPA who are involved the NFPA Conference and Expo and the annual technical session, July signifies our recovery from the biggest event of the year in fire, electrical, and life safety. This year has been no different. San Antonio saw the largest gathering of NFPA stakeholders at this event since I came on board at NFPA. This is very encouraging as NFPA strives to spread the word about the NFPA Fire and Life Safety Ecosystem. Each and everyone of the attendees at the Big Show are an integral part of this ecosystem.
One stakeholder group that has always been active in the NFPA ecosystem, is the electrical inspector community. Afterall, they represent an entire cog in the ecosystem around code compliance for electrical safety. In 2018, NFPA opened a dedicated member section for public sector electrical inspectors in order to assist in furthering and bettering the position of the electrical inspection community within the NFPA Ecosystem. This year the member section had its annual business meeting and executive board meeting on Sunday before the conference kicked off.
One of the topics that was at the center of the discussion and is evident that many of the members are very passionate about, is how can the NFPA Electrical Inspector Member Section play a role in helping the inspection community through providing resources and educational material. This is especially critical at this time when many municipalities are seeing budget cuts and funding reductions that lead to many non-electrical type building officials performing more and more inspections of electrical installations. Multi-hat inspectors are here and are sticking around. The member section recognizes this fact and wants to provide resources and help so that the Code Compliance cog of the Fire and Life Safety Ecosystem remains strong in the electrical world.
I had the opportunity to sit down with some of the members of the Electrical Inspector Section at Conference and Expo and discuss what some of the challenges are that the electrical inspection community is facing. What we talked about was a resounding need to keep up. Keeping up with changing technology, keeping up with a changing inspection landscape, and keeping up with what other organizations are doing around the industry. We spoke about the challenges facing the inspection community for about an hour in a sort of impromptu roundtable discussion that we did our best to capture on film. Check out some of the highlights from this conversation in this short video below that we put together to capture some of the more important points.
So how can the electrical inspector member section serve as a resource to the electrical inspection community? One of the methods that they have already started working on is by creating a whitepaper around conducting residential electrical inspections. This whitepaper spells out how the inspection process fits into the Ecosystem and then goes on further to list items and tasks that should be performed during the inspection process of a dwelling unit. They also go a step further and list the various references from building codes such as the NEC® and IRC® as well as other applicable reference standards.
Download the whitepaper and start using it today. If you’re an electrical inspector, let us know what you’re seeing out in the field. We’d love to hear from you. Also, the NFPA Electrical Inspector Member Section is seeking members to help further their mission. Membership in the Electrical Inspector Section is open to any NFPA member who is directly employed by or contracted to a public agency that promulgates and/or enforces codes and standards and performs one or more of the following activities:
- field electrical inspections
- electrical plans review
- administers/supervises personnel performing field electrical inspections and/or plans review
If you fit the qualifications and this is something you feel you would be interested in please apply today!