Training more than 1,400 code enforcers on the National Electrical Code® (NFPA 70®) over the course of 10 days is no small feat, but Tim McClintock and Jeff Sargent, NFPA’s Regional Electrical Code Specialists recently spent the first two weeks of December in sunny, but cold, California doing just that.
Every three years the California Building Standards Commission (CBSC) updates the California Electrical Code which consists of the NEC plus the amendments promulgated by the five state agencies involved in the code update process. The latest version of the California Electrical Code, the 2013 edition, is based on the 2011 edition of the NEC and becomes effective on January 1, 2014. California’s adoption has historically lagged one revision cycle behind the most current edition.
NFPA supports statewide adoption of the NEC by providing free training for the authorities having jurisdiction. This training consists of a 1-day program on the significant changes in the newly adopted edition, plus a free copy of the new code. California’s large geographic area and population presents a unique challenge to reaching as many of the enforcers as possible, so the road show consisted of 10 training sessions in 10 different locations, five in southern CA and five more in northern CA.
Once a new edition of the code is adopted by a promulgating body, it is the efforts of the code enforcement community that furthers NFPA’s fire and electrical safety mission by making sure that installations are performed according to the requirements of the newly adopted edition. The AHJs vital role in our safety system cannot be understated.
Tim and Jeff were provided with great support at each training venue by their “roadies” who handled the logistics necessary to make this training successful. Working with NFPA Southwest Regional Director Ray Bizal, Tim coordinated with Jim McGowan from the California Building Standards Commission, local chapters of the International Association of Electrical Inspectors (IAEI), the local building officials associations, Underwriters Laboratories, QPS Evaluation Services, and National Electrical Manufacturers Association to make this a hugely successful effort.
California is to be applauded for moving forward with the adoption of the 2013 California Electrical Code and its commitment to public safety by providing quality code enforcement. The effort to train the code enforcers on the newly adopted California Electrical Code helps ensure Californians are provided with safe electrical installations where they live, work, and play.
- by NFPA's Jeff Sargent and Tim McClintock