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Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 1,081

...the guy had dug a trench for a new pump water feed...

I'm not sure how things work over there, but in the US, every state has a "Call Before You Dig" or "One Call" system . There are fines imposed upon one who digs without calling first (and gets caught or hits a cable/pipe).

In some neighborhoods, people have called the police thinking that someone was painting graffiti when they were marking the underground utilities!

Joined: Feb 2002
Posts: 2,233
Before I was an electrician I was an alarm installer. We use to trade stories with the Telco guys all the time. Well one Telco guy told me about a service call he got. It seems that a lady called up the central office (CO). The CO called the service man and dispatched the guy to a house. The call was that even though the telephone didn't ring, the lady knew that someone was on the line. Her dog would howl. So the serviceman got there and asked the lady what the problem was. She stated that her dog would howl, and she would pick up the phone and some one would be there except that her telephone wouldn't ring. To make a long story short. The serviceman found that the dog was tied to a metal radiator with a metal leash and choker collar. It seemed that when the phone would ring the voltage would go to the phone but went into the water piping instead. So the telephone would not ring but the dog was getting a shock through it's collar. The dog would get the shock, startt to howl, and the lady would go to the telephone and say, "Hello?" P.S. I did not make this up. Honest guys!

Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 4,289
Harold, Now that is strange [Linked Image]

Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 228
I normally run installations but sometimes I get put on service and realize just how stupid some people can be. One of the easiest is when the receptionist puts her (purse, lunch bag, book, etc) on the remote release for the front door and we get the emergency service call for a door not locking, I have always wanted to see their faces when the $225 bill comes in the mail for a misplaced purse and I spent all of five minutes there....

Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 4,080
Likes: 3

I think I know your guy that forgot the wire.
[Linked Image]

I think Harold's in the lead so far with the strangest stuff!

[Linked Image]

Joined: Jul 2002
Posts: 8,432
Likes: 3
Just in case anyone was wondering, the meal was lovely Lamb and Mint Sauce, with Roast Spuds, Yorkshire puddings, Peas and Yams.
Farm-killed Lamb too, with all the taste still there.
I can actually bone out a side of Beef or Pork or Lamb, having come off of a farm,originally, this is not a problem, it's also not a problem eating it either!. [Linked Image]

Joined: Dec 2001
Posts: 2,497
Well, a service call we had to make ourselves due to some creative wiring, back when I was a kid of 6: We had rented a new apartment with 1913 wiring and the weirdest newer extensions. In one bedroom there was a receptacle that didn't work. The ceiling light didn't work as well, the previous tenants had taken down the fixture and left us with five(!) black wires taped up with band aid sticking out of a hole in the ceiling. Plus there were about 4 light switches there.
So what the electrician found was this: 3 wires (switched phase, unswitched phase and neutral) came up to the light and 2 wires continued all across the ceiling and down the wall to the receptacle. As these bloody idiots had disconnected all wires at the fixture the receptacle didn't work. BTW, part of the wire to the receptacle were 0.5mm2 (something like 20AWG) zip cord.

Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 246
Not a personal story for me, but funny, none the less.

A lady in Texas called her electrician, telling him that everytime the toilet flushed, the doorbell rang. The electrician thought, Yeah, sure, but was interested in just what was happening.

After he arrived, he had the lady flush the toilet, and sure enough, the doorbell chime sounded.

Perplexed, he opened up the attic access, where he knew the low-voltage wiring would be, from front door to chime.

He followed the wiring all along the attic floor, and soon found the problem.

Seems in this house, the plumber had run all the copper waterlines in the attic, since it would never get cold enough to freeze, and because the house sat on a slab.

One of the cold water lines ran directly over one of the low-voltage wires feeding the doorbell pushbutton. Whenever the toilet flushed, the waterline actually moved alittle bit, enought to finally rub the insulation off of the wires. Now, whenever the pipes moved, it acted just like the pushbutton, completing the circuit, and causing the chime to ring.

One for the books.

Rick Miell

Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 1,081
This goes back to my days as a Police Dispatcher in Philadelphia.

I received a 9-1-1 call from a man stating that he had just passed a tractor-trailer (parked) with a bunch of missiles on the back. It looked strange to him to see this truck just parked like that with nobody nearby. (Hey, don't fight, just send a blue-and-white.)

The police were sent to investigate. Sure enough, there it was, parked--a truck with a few missiles on the back of it.

The police began evacuating the entire area.

After conferring with the people at Fort Dix, it was determined that they had better come out to check on it. In addition to the military, there were also "who knows" how many other agencies called in.

While evacuating the area, the cops got to a nearby house and a man answered the door, apparently woken up out of a deep sleep. When the police told him why he needed to leave, he replied that the truck was his.

Seems that the trucker was transporting cement-filled dummy missiles to some sort of military show in New England, and was passing through Philly in the area where his mother lives. He decided to visit mom and to spend the night there before continuing on the next morning.

Joined: Apr 2003
Posts: 48
Had a customer call,she says that when she turns on her upstairs bathroom light ,It slows down the ceiling fans down stairs and the lights go dim. I verify this is happening and notice that the bathroom looks quite New....Joe Handy man fix-it has tapped into the switched leg of a three way (He has no nuetral) So when the fans downstairs are running its in series with the light upstairs...But how did the upstairs light work without a nuetral ??? Well to top it all off the fans had no grounding conductor all of the grounding conductors had been used as nuetrals...the fan windings were enough to act as a nuetral....Rewired half that house and cutomer complained...said I overcharged them......Yet joe handy man fix it was a good guy..I can't figure people..

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