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#17201 - 11/21/02 10:32 PM water "meter reader" shocked  
mj  Offline
Joined: Jun 2002
Posts: 186
meriidian, ms
yesterday i was called out by the city to investigate why a "water meter reader" was shocked as he lifted to cover of a water meter to check for leaks. I checked the voltage from the meter assembly to ground, the reading was 120 volts. afer observing the service entrance, i notice that the netural conductor was broken .this was a frist timer for me. has anyone else had this experience?

Work Gear for Electricians and the Trades

#17202 - 11/21/02 11:06 PM Re: water "meter reader" shocked  
fla sparkey  Offline
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 47
Winter Haven, Florida USA
I was called out to an older house because a plumber who was working on repairing a broken line to the house was shocked.

I arrived after the plumber had left. He had turned off the main to the home to finish his repair.

The main service did not have a ground rod installed and the neutral in the meter can was loose. The service was bonded to the water pipe only.

I repaired the loose neutral and added two ground rods to the service.

When the plumber made the repair I noticed that he had replaced the galvanized pipe that broke with pvc plastic.

Most of the water pipes in newer subdivisions around here are plastic. I always drive two ground rods on a new service.

#17203 - 11/21/02 11:34 PM Re: water "meter reader" shocked  
HotLine1  Offline

Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 6,853
Brick, NJ USA
Hey Fla Sparky:
Welcome to the ECN.....
BTW, doesn't 250-56 NEC ('99 still in effect here) require two rods, or do you document the "less than 25 Ohms" for the AHJ?


Yup, been there, done that many times.....



#17204 - 11/21/02 11:58 PM Re: water "meter reader" shocked  
mj  Offline
Joined: Jun 2002
Posts: 186
meriidian, ms
hotline1, how would you prove the 25 ohms or less, one of those $2000 meters, or the old way with the in line fuse, etc...any other tests for checking for the 25 ohms or less ?

#17205 - 11/21/02 11:59 PM Re: water "meter reader" shocked  
fla sparkey  Offline
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 47
Winter Haven, Florida USA
Hotline we had a couple of municipalities around here that only required a single rod if you also bonded to the cold water pipe.

The inspectors didn't ask for the ohms to ground reading.

[This message has been edited by fla sparkey (edited 11-21-2002).]

#17206 - 11/22/02 01:15 AM Re: water "meter reader" shocked  
Surge_in_fl  Offline
Joined: Oct 2002
Posts: 17
Tampa, Florida
This is the meg tester I use.
I do mostly cell tower sites and we must show under 5 ohms resistance and it works great.
Our AHJ requires 2 ground rods, water bond and building steel if available. Also Ufer bond on new construction in place of the 2 ground rods, but no proof of resistance test

#17207 - 11/22/02 02:01 AM Re: water "meter reader" shocked  
Scott35  Offline

Broom Pusher and
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 2,707
Anaheim, CA. USA
Don "Resqcapt19" and a few other Members have brought up this item in past threads. Threads also have links to data / documents regarding this situation.

It's not something new. Said Threads have plenty of Rants and Raves from me if you want to read my crazy views on the subject.

Scott s.e.t.

Scott " 35 " Thompson
Just Say NO To Green Eggs And Ham!

#17208 - 11/22/02 06:58 AM Re: water "meter reader" shocked  
sparky  Offline
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 5,311
Scott, i would say your 'views' per past threads were quite enlightening
[Linked Image]

on topic

bad noodle & municipal h2o... [Linked Image]

bad noodle, baaaddddd noooooddddlleee....

[This message has been edited by sparky (edited 11-22-2002).]

#17209 - 11/22/02 08:53 AM Re: water "meter reader" shocked  
resqcapt19  Offline
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 2,148
How was the equipment in the building working with an open neutral? In many cases the metal underground water piping system will connect to a number of buildings providing a path for the neutral current, but in those cases there will be very little voltage to ground. As far as grounding rod or other types of electrodes, while required by code, they would do little prevent the shock incident described above.


#17210 - 11/22/02 02:09 PM Re: water "meter reader" shocked  
mj  Offline
Joined: Jun 2002
Posts: 186
meriidian, ms
i dont know what caused the voltage to read 120 to ground, .. but when the power company came out and re-connected the netural conductor everything was back to normal.

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