I thought that in Ontario the eletrical trade was not regulated and that any plant or big building could have a non electrical crew doing electrical work as long as they were trained on the equipment and inspections were done.I was wondering if this is true and what constitutes "trained".I know i saw it somewhere in the code book.thanks
Frank.....interesting point you bring up. Along with your comments, I am amazed and disturbed at the growing number of do-it-yourself 'seminars' at the local building stores (Home Depot, etc. etc) to people who have no knowledge of electricity, yet think they know it all by watching a demonstration. Why doesn't the ESA crack down on this or emphasize the need for inspections or hiring a qualified and licensed electrician?
Here is another double standard.... In one municipality, I built a new house. The municipality would NOT let ME, a certified and licensed electrician do my own underground street-to-meter base hydro connection and hook up (I gladly was willing to take out a permit and have the work inspected and I have done this work in other municpalities before). RATHER, what I had to do was pay the municipality who farmed the work out to an excavating firm! This guy had no electrical license, and was NOT a licensed electrician! He was a backhoe operator who had the tools and wire to complete the street-to-meterbase connection. And as I stated, he had no license, DID NOT have to take out a permit and DID NOT have to have his work inspected!
Again, I ask, why does the ESA permit this double standard?? How come people like this don't have to pay inspection fees and permits like us licensed people do?
The Code Book you would be referring to would be the 1999 OH&S Act & Regulations and not the Ontario Electrical Safety Code.
Industrial Establishments, Regulation 851 in specific for Industrial Facilities.
As well, Regualtion 213/91, #181 Electrical Hazards for Construction Projects.
This would govern the regulation of who is a "competent person" or a "competent worker"
This would be a Ministry of Labour issue and they would have jurisdiction.
Furthermore, the enforcement of licensing and the municipal by-laws governing the qualifications and fees are the responsibility of the individual municipality.
Let me tell you about ESA’s enforcement activities.
From March 2000 to January 2001 ESA investigated about 1,994 situations involvingviolations of the Code.
About 1,200 were installations where there was no application for inspection, 500 involved outstanding defects, 200 related to unapprovedelectrical productsand about 100 were referrals from other agenciessuch as the Fire Marshal’soffice, police or theMinistry of Labour.
These investigations resultedin a total of 289 charges.
Does ESA have a zero tolerance policy?
Individuals are given an opportunity to comply. Infact, more than 85% of thesituations we investigateare resolved without theneed to lay charges.
However,if there are serious safety hazards or there is a history of non-compliance and disregard for the requirements of the Code we will take immediate action.
Many people believe that ESA focuses its enforcement activity exclusively on electrical contractors.
The vast majority of our enforcement activity has not involved electrical contractors.
In fact, less than 30% of the charges and convictions from March 2000 to January 2001 involved electrical contractors. Most involved heating and ventilating installers, renovators, and what I can best describe as “trunk slammers”.
Shouldn’t ESA focus its enforcement on people who never take out permits for electrical inspection?
I looked at the “permit” history of those people that we have charged or convicted. 72% of these people had never taken out an application for inspection or had taken out less than one permit per month with ESA prior to being charged. Clearly these are people who have little or no track record of complying with the requirements of the Code.
The electrical contractors we charged were taking out less than three permits per month on average.
As to your issue with the local utility.
As you are well aware, if the service conductors from the street to the line side of the meter is utility owned, then the Ontario Electrical Safety Code does not apply to any equipment and wiring that is part of the supply service (as defined in Section 0)
I hope this clarifies your misconception.
Tony Moscioni Electrical Inspector Electrical Safety Authority