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Mandate of an "arc fault limiting disconnect" ahead of fire pump controllers?

Question asked by dave.nelson on Aug 9, 2016
Latest reply on Aug 19, 2016 by Steve Benton

H E L P ! ! ! ! !


Iwould like to know when the technical committees are going to mandate, an "arc fault limiting disconnect" ahead of fire pump controllers?  I find many controllers (post startup) labeled with Arc Flash ratings higher then available PPE clothing, making it impossible to quote 'safely trouble shoot problems'.  I have felt for years that the technical committee would catch up but have seen no progress in the code ( but have heard rumors of behind the scenes discussions) what seems to be the hold up?  Are we really waiting on the owners, do to potential cost adders to construction, (at least that is the only thing I can think of).  I have controllers labeled at 135cal (480v) and 142cal (208v), without a disconnect between the utility and the FPC.  I also have large university which has started installing these disconnects but are locating them in the utility high voltage vault, thus their electricians cannot even get at them to shut them off, and supposedly have been told that they are not to reach into an energized panel past the door opening plane, which means they cannot take any voltage reading to perform diagnostics.  Do you have any suggestions?


Last year we replaced a controller which had suffered a major surge, most likely lightning related.  I made the case to the AHJ, and he flatly refused to even hear of it stating "the code will not allow a disconnect between the utility and the FPC".