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Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 642
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This is a local concern in the area you work in. If the AHJ approves a set of plans and has the required legal authority to make sure the building was constructed to plan, then the AHJ can look for that requirement in addition to code.
If the AHJ does not have the legal authority to enforce the plans then he can only enforce the code as adopted in that area.
The AHJ here does not check building vs plans because the legal authority is not there. The plan checks here are for permitting purposes and to see if code minimums are met inthe design. Change happen all the time and the record set turned in after the job is the owners to do with what they want.

It depends on what rules and/or laws you are working under.


ed
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 1,213
S
Member
As an EE, I often get pissed when the electrician/technician does what he feels like, and in the process ruins careful planning around often difficult design issues- there are many times where compromises have to be made on the minor things so that the major ones work, and it's a LOT easier to do them on paper beforehand than to do them wrong on the jobsite and have to undo it and do it twice. Especially when the changes made are *wrong* and done just to cut corners. I try to always notate the intent on the plans- like a canned note saying that "only general locations are shown, minor deviations are authorized" etc. On the other hand, there are a great many things that are more apparent when you're right there, hands-on, and I'll actively defer to the electrician's judgement. That judgement is also the last chance for mistakes to be caught.

If in doubt, give the engineer a call! I'd much prefer getting constant calls than have expensive problems pop up. (Minor disclaimer: I work on aircraft carriers, not houses... boils down to the same process, though)

[This message has been edited by SteveFehr (edited 03-25-2005).]

Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 49
T
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what if the sumited plans are not to code?

Joined: Aug 2003
Posts: 1,374
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Moderator
Quote
what if the sumited plans are not to code?

Then you're kind of screwed.


Ryan Jackson,
Salt Lake City
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 1,213
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Member
If the plans aren't to code, question it! A lot of the problems between engineers and contractors stem from miscommunications; no sense making a mistake on paper more expensive with malicious compliance. If it was a mistake, then it's a mistake and it's a good thing you caught it. If it was a deliberate nonconformance, then you'd want to know the background and/or get it in writing so you can cover your ass and put the onus on the engineer.

The appendecies of the IRC has a paragraph stating that the codes are not meant to stifle innovation and that exceptions are allowed. (I mention this because my state, like others, didn't adobt the NEC directly, but only through the IBC, in which case, as I understand it, the IBC would have override the NEC.) If the non-conformance was done for a reason and has sound engineering data and a stamp to back it up and was approved by the inspections dept, then you'd at least feel better about doing it like the plans, right?

Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 167
S
Member
quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
what if the sumited plans are not to code?
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Then you're kind of screwed.

----------------------------

----------------------------

ROTFLMAO
Ryan, Can I quote you next time a code violation slips through on some plans and the contractor points out that the plans were approved that way???? The look on his face would be priceless!!!!


Larry LeVoir
Inspector
City of Irvine, CA
Joined: Aug 2003
Posts: 1,374
R
Moderator
You bet!

In fact, I had to tell someone that today about an hour ago!!!


Ryan Jackson,
Salt Lake City
Joined: Jun 2002
Posts: 186
M
mj Offline OP
Member
Most of the plans that I review that are drawn by an EE always exceedes the mimimun NEC requirments . When I approve the plans , the job will done accordingly. The ony way to change anything in the plans,will be a letter from the EE and (those changes must meet or exceed the NEC requirments). From time to time electrical contractors ask us to help design an installation, however, I refuse to take part in a design issue. As AHJ we are not design consults.

Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 650
W
Member
If an inspector notes that an installation does not match the plans but _does_ meet code, then wouldn't they at least have a moral obligation to inform the customer? If I as a customer had specified copper wire of excess ampacity and aluminium wire of sufficient ampacity was installed, I'd feel cheated.

-Jon

Joined: Aug 2003
Posts: 64
E
Member
For some additonal perspective to this question, here is an excerpt from the State of Utah administrative rules governing building inspectors.
http://www.dopl.utah.gov/licensing/statutes_and_rules/R156-56.doc

Note that as used in these rules "building inspector" is a generic term covering electrical inspectors, plumbing inspectors, etc.

Quote:
R156-56-502. Unprofessional Conduct - Building Inspectors.
"Unprofessional conduct" includes:
.
.
.
(10) approval of work which materially varies from approved documents that have been stamped by an architect, professional engineer or both unless authorized by the licensed architect, professional engineer or both;

End Quote

In the state of Utah an inspector is required to inspect to the approved plans. Other states or jurisdictions may have similar provisions.

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