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It is extremely disappointing that unlike NEC 2017 and its handbook, the NEC 2020 edition and its handbook are not available in PDF format that you can store on your computer as a digital resource and access it anywhere. The availability of NEC 2020 & its handbook only as a print and online digital format will make its access extremely difficult in the remote area with no or poor internet connection, unless one prefers to carry the "bulky" printed copy everywhere! It appears as we are working backwards instead of working towards "going green" to provide positive impact on the environmental foot print! According to me, the NFPA should provide the licensed pdf option for NEC 2020 & its handbook like they did for NEC 2017 & its handbook, which an be stored on the PC locally and also allow pdf mark-ups & comments.

Qualified Person:

One who has demonstrated skills and knowledge related to the construction and operation of electrical equipment and installations and has received safety training to identify the hazards and reduce the associated risk.


Employers have long struggled with how to fulfill the "demonstrated skills and knowledge" that is required before one is considered a qualified person as defined by NFPA 70E®. NFPA electrical safety certifications are tools aimed at doing just that. These certifications all require a minimum level of safety training and by passing the exam, certification holders have a tool that they can use to demonstrate to employers that they have a certain level of knowledge of electrical safety concepts. 


Certified Electrical Safety Technician (CEST)

Certified Electrical Safety Technician

The NFPA certified electrical safety technician (CEST) is a new certification that was created in 2017 due to feedback from the industry that there was a need for an electrical safety credential for those who don't have the same extensive educational background as those professionals in the electrical field. This certification is perfect for workers in fields such as HVAC, maintenance, and non-electrical plant workers.



Certified Electrical Safety Compliance Professional

The NFPA Certified Electrical Safety Compliance Professional (CESCP) certification program is designed to meet the needs of electrical and safety professionals who oversee electrical safety programs or who manage electricians and other personnel exposed to electrical hazards. 


Certified Electrical Safety Worker (CESW)

Certified Electrical Safety Worker

The Certified Electrical Safety Worker (CESW) is a professional credential that demonstrates a working knowledge of NFPA 70E® Standard for Electrical Safety in the Workplace. Due to the nature of the electrical industry, often times electricians and installers find themselves changing employers multiple times during their careers and the CESW is a credential similar to an OSHA 10 card or an electrical license that workers can provide to their employers to demonstrate that they have recieved safety training and have a working knowledge of NFPA 70E®.



It is important to note that none of the electrical safety certifications from NFPA should be used as the sole basis for qualification, nor does NFPA imply that a certification holder is a qualified person. However, armed with these tools employers and employees are one step closer to the ultimate goal of a safe electrical industry.


If you are in the Buckeye state, and if you use the NEC®, and if you are wondering “What’s new and different in the 2017 edition?”, then you need to attend our upcoming one day   NEC (2017) Significant Changes 1-day Classroom Training.  This program is being offered to coincide with the State of Ohio’s adoption of the 2017 edition of the NEC that becomes effective on November 1st. Taught by NFPA’s (and Ohio’s) own Tim McClintock, this one day program will take you through the significant changes in the 2017 edition of the National Electrical Code, including a review of five new articles and revised requirements addressing industry trends in new technology including delivery and generation of electric power.  Two classes are scheduled for this November in Columbus and Fairlawn.  Don’t wait to sign up for this class as seats are limited.  As a professional doing business in the State of Ohio as a Facility Manager, Contractor, Installer or Designer, it is great way to learn about the changes. For state licensed contractors, earn .8 CEUs (8 hours) towards your annual renewal requirements. CEUs will also be offered for other licensures.  (please verify applicability with your professional board or organization).



The closing date for submitting public input for the 2020 National Electrical Code is tomorrow, September 7 at 11:59 pm Eastern time. The URL for submitting your public input is

Reminder: the public input closing date for the 2020 edition of the NEC® is Thursday, September 7 at 11:59 pm Eastern Time. We can no longer accept submissions of public on paper or through email. All submissions must use our online submission tool, which can be found at


If you have any questions about how to use the tool, I will be conducting a webinar on Friday, September 1 at 11:00 am Eastern (8:00 am Pacific). 


To connect to the meeting:


Phone Number USA/Canada 1-866-546-3377

Passcode: 934347


This webinar is open to all and I am happy to entertain any questions.

Summer is upon us, and while you might not think "electrical safety" when you think of swimming pools, you should!


NFPA's Electrical Technical Lead, Derek Vigstol, talks about how 2017 NEC revisions address this topic in this NFPA Journal Article. Read on to ensure a safe and happy summer!


For Electrical Professionals, how do these revisions impact your work?


For those who are swimming pool owners, and maybe not electrical professionals, how much have you considered electrical safety around your pool?

An article dedicated to electric vehicle charging requirements was added to the National Electrical Code® (NEC®) in the 1996 edition. This would lead some to believe the 1990’s was the origin of the electric vehicle industry.  The true history of the electric vehicle actually dates back to the mid 1800’s and was one of the first markets for the electric motor, storage battery, and distribution equipment manufacturers. 

Between 1834 and 1896, small-scale production of electric vehicles helped develop public interest in the technology. Electric vehicles could outperform both steam and gas powered automobiles of that era.  The first car dealership in the U.S. sold only electric vehicles.  The first auto race in the U.S. was won by an electric vehicle.  By 1900, large-scale production of electric vehicles ushered in the first golden age of the electric vehicle industry.  At the time the U.S. entered World War I in 1917, 40,000+ electric vehicles were on the road from nearly a dozen manufacturers.  The most popular vehicle during this period was the Detroit Electric manufactured by the Anderson Electric Car Company.  Between 1907 and 1939, the company produced roughly 13,000 electric vehicles.

Early manufacturers of electric vehicle motors included General Electric, Lincoln Electric, and Westinghouse Electric. The “slow-speed” type of motor was adopted by the majority of manufacturers.  The 80 volt motors operated at 800 to 900 rpm and could push a 700-pound to 5-ton vehicle up to 30-mph.  There were two storage battery types used during the early development of the electric vehicle.  The first and most common was the standard lead-acid battery.  At least six different manufacturers produced lead-acid storage batteries in the early 1900’s with the largest being the Electric Storage Battery Company.  This battery was marketed under the name “Exide” which was short for Excellent Oxide.  The other popular battery was the Edison Alkaline Storage Battery which cost twice as much as the standard lead-acid battery but also had superior performance.  The Edison Alkaline Storage Battery owned approximately 25 percent of the pleasure vehicle market and 50 percent of the delivery truck and taxi market. Storage batteries of this era had a life of about 9,000 miles through rectified charging methods.  8-12 hours of charging time was needed at a normal rate of use.    

Electric vehicle supply equipment available in the early 1900’s included direct DC charging from a 110-220 VDC source or via AC rectifying from a 500-600 volt source. The most common AC rectifiers in use during this era included motor generators, rotary converters, and mercury arc rectifiers.  There were over a dozen EVSE manufacturers by 1920 with the largest and most popular being General Electric, the Cutler-Hammer Mfg. Co., Westinghouse/Cooper-Hewitt, Allen-Bradley Co., and the Lincoln Electric Company.  700 documented charging stations were in operation in the U.S. at the start of World War I.  Unfortunately, there were also 38 separate charging plug configurations adopted by the Electric Vehicle Association of America at the time.    

Prior to the 1996 edition of the NEC®, requirements for electric vehicle supply equipment were scattered throughout the code.  The earliest editions of the code contained requirements for charging cables, charging panels, storage batteries, and motor generators.  Many of these rules could be found in Article 33 of the code dating before the 1937 edition.  The 1937 NEC® reorganized the code into the Chapter & Article format still used to this very day.  Section 5109 of that edition included requirements for battery charging.  The 1947 NEC® revised the tile to Electric Vehicle Charging and moved the rules to Section 5133.  In the 1953 and 1956 editions of the code, electric vehicle charging could be found in Section 5105.h.  The code format changed again in 1959 placing electric vehicle charging requirement in Section 511-8.  The final location for electric vehicle charging could be found in Section 511-9 of the 1993 NEC®. Article 625 of the 2017 NEC® has four parts, twenty-three articles, and includes twenty definitions. 

Rapid development of the gasoline powered vehicle, the lack of electrical infrastructure outside of cities, and the great depression brought an end to the first golden age of the electric vehicle. Many of the early EVSE manufacturers transitioned into electric power distribution, equipment for premise wiring systems, and away from electrical vehicle supply equipment development.  The electric vehicle industry remained mostly stagnant during the rest of the 20th century with only a few small-scale and concept vehicle productions.

Many electric vehicle enthusiasts would claim we are now in the midst of the second golden age of the electric vehicle. An estimated 570,000 electric vehicles are on the road today utilizing the 70,000+ charging stations available throughout the country.  Advancements in electrical vehicle supply equipment will continue to be the most essential component of the electric vehicle industry.  The availability, speed, and convenience of electric vehicle charging will need to be comparable to fueling gasoline powered vehicles in order for the industry to fully disrupt and overtake the transportation industry.

Forward thinking is required by transportation administrations, community leaders, and property developers. A sufficient number of charging stations will be needed at most public parking lots and garages to accommodate the growing number of electric vehicles being produced and sold each and every year.  “EV-Ready” initiatives are already underway in many states and local jurisdictions, but further progress is needed in every state of the nation.  In an article titled “Seeing Ahead for the Electric Vehicle” written for Electric Vehicles Magazine in the February 1917 issue, Thomas Edison was quoted as saying; “The growth of the electric vehicle has been hindered by lack of charging facilities.  It’s a funny business when so few central stations realize that there is a market for the sale of current for charging electric cars.  The public is in a curious position of wanting to buy something for which there is no place to go.  It is easy to see that we can never expect the electric to come into its own until we have more intelligence and reliability in the places where cars are charged.  Sometimes I think the men who ought to see ten years ahead see only to next week.”  These sentiments hold true to this very day, an entire century since they were first stated.

NEMA represents the manufacturers of EVSE products and assemblies to support the development of the EVSE market by leading efforts to educate the public on the features and value of the electric vehicle supply equipment infrastructure around the world. The Section provides a forum for industry efforts to develop consistent positions for domestic and international codes and standards ensuring safety and interoperability of equipment, to build support for the EVSE market through marketing programs and business information, to organize a unified industry position on legislative and regulatory issues, to develop collaborative efforts, such as training programs with members of the EVSE supply channel, including contractors and installers, to align efforts with major stakeholders in the electric vehicle market, including auto manufacturers, utilities, and the federal government, and to drive business and technology change with global strategies for an EVSE sector.

NFPA 70 Article 220- Branch-Circuit, Feeder, and Service Calculations

Single Family Dwelling Unit

Dwelling Unit  2,500 sq. ft.

General Lighting

2,500 x 3VA=                                            7,500VA

Space Heating

30A+ 45A= 60A x 240V =                         18,000VA

Small Appliance and Laundry

(2x 1,500VA) + 1,500VA=                         4,500VA

Dryer=                                                       5,000VA


8,000VA x demand factor 80%=                6,400VA

Water Heater=                                       +  4,800VA

Total=                                                        46,200VA   / 240V= 192.5A

200A Service



Master Electrician

Posted by matthewnoel31 Sep 3, 2016

I recently joined the NFPA and I am looking forward to exchanging information and ideas with other members.

I am a licensed master electrician, but I definitely do not know everything!


Masterlock and key.png

      I make a lot of 3-D models with the SketchUp program in my spare time, this is one of them.




Matthew S. Noel

Originally presented on July 20, 2016, NFPA's Regional Electrical Code Specialist Jeffrey Sargent provides an in-depth overview about some of the proposed changes to the 2017 NEC© in this 2-hour webinar. The following is a video preview.


The full, two hour-long video is available for free if you are logged into NFPA Xchange.

First Look at Proposed Changes to 2017 NEC® - WEBINAR


Haven't registered for Xchange yet? What are you waiting for? Just look for the login link above to login or register for your free account on Xchange. Xchange is more than a blog; it's an online community that connects you with peers worldwide and directly with NFPA staff. Get involved today!

Code Adoption Progresses in the South

This piece was originally published in the June 2016 issue of ei, the magazine of the electroindustry.

Bryan P. Holland, Southern Region Field Representative, NEMA


Several states in the southern region have completed the code update process, while others have just begun the development cycle. Following is a brief look at the code adoption progress in select states.

Completed States

  • North Carolina: The 2014 National Electrical Code® (NEC) went into effect on April 1, 2016.
  • South Carolina: The 2015 International Code Council codes (I-Codes) and 2014 NEC take effect on July 1, 2016.
  • Alabama: The 2014 NEC, 2015 International Residential Code (IRC), and 2015 International Energy Conservation Code take effect on October 1, 2016.
  • Oklahoma: The 2015 IRC takes effect on November 1, 2016.

In-Progress States

  • Louisiana: The Louisiana Uniform Construction Code Council has assembled several technical committees to review and recommend adoption of the 2015 I-Codes and 2014 NEC. Work is expected to be completed by October 2016. The anticipated effective date of the updated code is January 1, 2017.
  • Florida: The Florida Building Commission has adopted the 2015 I-Codes and 2014 NEC as the base codes for the development of the sixth edition of the Florida Building Code. Technical advisory committees will review proposed code modifications and public comments. Work is expected to continue through 2016 and conclude in late 2017. The anticipated effective date of the updated code is December 31, 2017.
  • Virginia: The Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development has assembled four working groups to review and recommend adoption of the 2015 I-Codes and 2014 NEC. Work is expected to continue through all of 2016 and most of 2017. The anticipated effective date of the updated code is March 1, 2018.

Learn More

NEMA field representatives promote the use and adoption of the electrical, life safety, and energy conservation standards and monitor regional developments that are significant to the electroindustry. Activities include offering public comment at code adoption hearings, providing technical documentation to regulatory agencies, and supporting local associations and organizations impacted by delayed code adoption.

For up-to-date code adoption information in all 50 states and to subscribe to the NEMA code alerts email service, visit

View NEC adoption maps, commercial energy codes adoption by state, and other resources at


The April NFPA Journal Podcast episode is now available for download on iTunes, Google Play, and other podcast platforms.

The episode features NFPA electrical engineers and code specialists Mark Earley and Jeff Sargent, speaking on three new proposed articles in the upcoming 2017 edition of the National Electrical Code® (NEC®). The proposed articles discussed deal with energy storage systems, large-scale photovoltaic, and direct-current microgrids.


Listen to the podcast to hear the experts give their insights on these new technologies, and to learn about how they are addressed in the 2017 NEC. If you prefer, listen to the podcast on your computer.


Don’t miss an episode. Please subscribe to the NFPA Journal Podcast on iTunes!

At this year's NFPA Conference and Expo, the NFPA Electrical Section will be awarding the first Richard G. Biermann Award for outstanding service to the National Electrical Code. Today, our library located this article on the award's namesake, Dick Biermann. I would like to share this great profile of our most prominent volunteers. Subsequent to this article, Dick served on the NFPA board of directors and was the recipient of NFPA's highest volunteer award, the Paul Lamb award.


The 2016 Richard G. Biermann Award will be presented during the Electrical Section dinner on Tuesday evening, June 14. I hope that you can join us!


The link to the article is:


Power Oriented


A look at the 2017 NEC. BY Jeffrey Sargent


AS THE 2014 EDITION OF the National Electrical Code® approaches mid-cycle, nine new articles have been proposed for the 2017 edition of the NEC®, with four resulting in first revisions. Of those, three focus on the generation, distribution, and storage of electrical power, areas of considerable interest and activity in the electrical industry.


Proposed Article 691, Large-Scale Photovoltaic (PV) Electric Supply Stations, covers PV supply stations with a generating capacity of 5,000 kilowatts or more. The systems covered by this article differ from those covered in existing NEC Article 690, in that the power generated by a large-scale PV electric supply station is solely for the purpose of supplying power to an electric utility transmission or distribution system at medium or transmission-level voltages. Such facilities already exist and more are planned. Article 690 is oriented to utility-interactive or stand-alone systems that are used to directly supply a premises wiring system and is not a good fit for PV-generating facilities of this magnitude.


Proposed Article 706, Energy Storage Systems, provides requirements covering permanently installed systems that can be stand-alone or interactive with other electric power production sources. Historically, lead-acid batteries—and, more recently, new battery technologies used for energy storage—have been covered in Article 480. However, batteries are not the only form of energy storage devices available today. Flow batteries, capacitors, flywheels, and compressed air are other forms. The proposed article centralizes the requirements for all energy storage technologies, including the current requirements in Article 480, into a single NEC article.

Proposed Article 712, DC Microgrids, covers direct-current power systems where DC sources such as photovoltaic, wind turbines, and fuel cells supply power directly into a distribution system to supply DC utilization equipment such as LED lighting, communications equipment, computers and servers, variable speed motors, heating/ventilating/air conditioning equipment, and more. Efficiency is gained as the typical DC–AC, and then AC–DC, conversions are eliminated. DC distribution systems of this nature are currently being used in data centers throughout the world, and could in fact be used in any setting where on-site DC generation supply, such as a PV system, is used to supply a distribution system. Coupled with energy storage capability, such systems also provide for a reliable on-site system that is uncoupled from the typical offsite power system and thus not subject to interruptions occurring in the offsite sources.


The fourth first revision, Article 425, Fixed Resistance and Electrode Industrial Heating Process Equipment, covers equipment such as boilers, electrode boilers, immersion heaters, process air heaters, and other equipment that is used in a variety of industrial processes. The proponent of this revision cites a need for installers, designers, and authorities having jurisdiction to have a set of requirements for the safe installation of such equipment, which can have operating voltages ranging from 480 V up to medium voltage class (13.8 kV).


The other five recommendations for new NEC articles did not achieve first revision status, but are open for public comment (as are the four first revisions) that could result in their inclusion in the 2017 NEC.


More than 4,000 public inputs were processed for the 2017 edition of the code, from which 1,235 first revisions or changes were developed. The first draft report is scheduled for public access in mid July, and comments on the first revisions can be submitted online until September 25; paper submittals are due August 21. The revision process for the code will culminate with the issuance of the 2017 NEC in August 2016.



JEFFREY SARGENT is a regional electrical code specialist for NFPA.


Safe Home Alabama


Fighting off a bid to remove arc fault circuit interrupters from the state's building code.


IN SEPTEMBER, the Alabama Energy and Residential Code Board met to consider a proposal to remove the requirement of arc fault circuit interrupters (AFCIs) from the state’s Residential Building Code. The proposal, supported by a homebuilders group, would affect new construction of one- and two-family homes. AFCIs were simply too expensive, the homebuilders argued; by their own estimate, AFCI installation in a typical home costs about $300.



The September meeting followed a hearing in August that included testimony from AFCI supporters like Charlie Donaghe and members of Alabama’s fire service. In 1971, Donaghe and his sister were seriously burned in a home fire, the result of a damaged power cord to a television—exactly the kind of problem AFCIs are designed to prevent. AFCIs respond to electrical failures that are typically beyond the functional level of most standard circuit breakers and fuses. Had the cord of their television been protected by an AFCI, it is likely that Donaghe and his sister would have slept safely through that night more than 40 years ago.

“How does spending $300 compare to the cost of being hospitalized, treated for burns for months, and the lifelong impact of these injuries?” Donaghe told the hearing, according to the Associated Press. He urged the board not to “turn the clock back to the ’70s” by approving the amendment. “Why would you end the use of something that’s proven and affordable to prevent children and families from dying in an electrical house fire?,” he said. “If you have successfully used this technology to make a difference, why would you just push that away?”



Donaghe’s testimony was supported by Edward Paulk, the state fire marshal, and Chief Gary Sparks, president of the Alabama Association of Fire Chiefs. According to the U.S. Fire Administration, Sparks said, Alabama was third in the nation in fire death rate and relative risk, behind only Mississippi and Washington D.C.; removing the AFCI requirement from the building code for new one- and two-family homes “is a step backwards,” he said. Sparks said Alabama had 94 fire fatalities in 2014 and has had 62 so far this year.



Several years ago, the Alabama Homebuilders Association successfully lobbied against residential sprinklers. At the AFCI hearing in August, the group’s spokesperson was one of two people (the other one was a homebuilder) supporting the elimination of AFCIs from the state’s residential building code. They cited cost, as well as inconsistent enforcement, as reasons to support the amendment. If the board sided with the homebuilders, Alabama would join Indiana as the only states, of the 47 with statewide building codes, to amend AFCIs out of the code.



Alabama isn’t the only state where this battle is being fought. In North Carolina, the state’s Building Code Council is considering a proposal—again supported by homebuilders, citing cost—that would prevent adoption of the 2014 edition of the National Electrical Code® (NEC®), which expands AFCI use into kitchens and laundry areas in new construction. A vote is scheduled for December.



On September 17, Alabama’s Residential Code Board met to decide the issue of AFCIs in the state building code. Instead of voting on the matter, it created a new amendment where the building code would reference the NEC, with its requirements for AFCIs. Alabama’s building code currently operates under the 2008 edition of the NEC, and local jurisdictions can adopt subsequent editions. Another public hearing on the new amendment is scheduled for November, with a vote slated for December.



The good news is that safety advocates were heard, and we won a battle. But the war continues.


Jeff Sargent is a regional electrical code specialist for NFPA. You can read more by Jeff here jsargent