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#78984 11/16/01 09:04 AM
Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 4,289
Member
I go regularly to buildings where the electrical rooms are kept locked, and the tenants don't have a key (both multi and single tenants). It's not unusual to have to drive 5 or 10 miles to pick up a key from the management company.
Although this is a pain in the neck, my concern is more with the tenant not being able to shut off the power in the event of an emergency.
I don't think that this constitutes "ready access", and the tenants should be able to get in the rooms immediately on a 24-7 basis.
What do you think???

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#78985 11/16/01 10:36 AM
Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 218
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I agree with you on the ready access. Seems that a building supt should have one or there should be some means to provide a key. Can also see why the tenants don't have access due to vandalism, etc, though.

#78986 11/16/01 01:11 PM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 280
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Member
electure;
I agree these duplexes need acccess to the service panels. A lot of times these Landlords take an old single home and convert them to two apartments and the only access is through the downstairs appartment.
Our inspectors always insists that the tenants have access to their panels.
I had a service call where the LL called and said that one of her tenants didnt have power, when I got there, there were 3 meters outside,one of them had a yellow tag meaning a disconnect, one was for the house panel the other two for the two apartments, the POCO had shut one of the tenants power off but half of her apartment was on the house meter some of these places are accidents waiting to happen and the only access to the three panels was through the downstairs appartment.

#78987 11/16/01 02:04 PM
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 7,520
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I see the landlord's point of view, but for safety's sake I feel that there must be easy access to shut off power in an emergency.

I had a demonstration of this sort of thing years ago at a girlfriend's house.
This was a general store with apartment above, and all the main switchgear was down in the shop. Said girlfriend's younger sister started to run a bath, then went off in the car taking all the shop keys with her. When we realized something was wrong, water had already flooded the hallway and was cascading through lights and fittings in the hallway below giving an ample demonstration of why water and electricity don't mix too well. I had to smash the window in the shop door to get to the main switch.

Younger sister was not too popular with Mom and Dad that night!

#78988 11/16/01 06:35 PM
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 5,392
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Is there a Fireman here that will comment??

#78989 11/16/01 08:09 PM
Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 4,289
Member
I should have mentioned that these aren't duplexes or houses, but large commercial buildings with services of up to 2000 or 3000 amps of 480V power.
They contain many more possible sources of trouble, and the trouble could be of a much greater magnitude. (I've actually taken to telling tenants how to open Utility Co. and Fire Dept lockboxes with the tire irons from their cars for emergency access to keys).
Any complaints to Mgmt Co's, even with Code references, have had the same result. They deem their 9-5 M-F remote location as "ready access" [Linked Image]

#78990 11/17/01 08:21 AM
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 5,392
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Scott,
does your area use knox-boxes?

#78991 11/17/01 01:05 PM
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 599
N
Member
Knox-boxes are pretty common out here in SO CA.

#78992 11/17/01 02:14 PM
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 5,392
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Member
well,
911 would mitigate any entry problems.

#78993 11/17/01 03:27 PM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 280
M
Member
Sparky:
Exccuse my ignorance but what is a ' Knox-box'?

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