Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: Automatic Lighting Controls vs. NEC 110.26 (E)

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    12

    Automatic Lighting Controls vs. NEC 110.26 (E)

    Recently upgraded a large manufacturing facilities lighting from 400W HID to high bay flourescents with integral occupancy sensors. Everything went well and the areas looked great upon completion. Project will pay for itself in 2 years with energy savings since old lights burned 24/7/365. There were some grumblings from the union but we worked with supervisors and operators to move and/or add fixtures as needed to meet their concerns. Yesterday however an email from the local union safety rep stated that we are in violation of the 2011 NEC 110.26(E). Their arguement is that the areas must have manual overide controls since they are served by bus duct, there are local panelboards, and the manufacturing machines have control panels which periodically require maintenance. This section of the code was changed in 2011 as before it only required the manual overides in electrical equipment rooms. Since the 2011 code has not been adopted by our state I tried the card that we were working with the 2008 NEC, needless to say this argument didn't win. Anyone have any opinions on this? Is an occupancy sensor considered automatic controls? It does require movement of a person to activate the light. I think the main reason for the complaint is that the fixtures were installed by an outside contracter and not the UAW skilled trades.

    Thanks for your input.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Easton, Maryland NEC: 2011
    Posts
    7,867
    This is the panel statement from the ROP for the change.

    I would say you are not meeting the original intent as they use the word clarifies.

    Panel Statement: The revision meets the submitter’s concerns and clarifies
    that the illumination is for all working spaces about service equipment,
    switchboards, panelboards, or motor control centers installed indoors.


    And yes an occupancy sensor is automatic controls.
    "Electricity is really just organized lightning." George Carlin


    Derék

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    3,100
    If feasible, one way around it would be to install individual lighting at the control cabinets with manual overrides, the cost should still be trumped by the savings of sensors on the other lights.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Ocala, Florida, USA
    Posts
    996
    Of many things in the code book that seem a little over the top, this is one that makes a lot of sense to me. You mentioned machinery, and that also requires lighting not controlled automatically. From a purely safety point, you should have locally controlled lighting at all locations that have electrical panels.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    12
    Okay, so it appears I will need to add some manual overides to meet the intent of the code. Any idea what the minimum illumance level required would be for working in a denergized electrical panel. At this facility they are not allowed to work on energized equipment. If we add a pull chain switch to stategic fixtures would this cover us?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Easton, Maryland NEC: 2011
    Posts
    7,867
    How is a pull chain switch going to control a light that is controlled by an occupancy sensor? The light would have to be switchlegged with the power feed in the fixture.
    "Electricity is really just organized lightning." George Carlin


    Derék

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    12
    Each fixture has an integral OC sensor. I assume it could be wired in parallel with the sensor.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Fairmont, WV, USA
    Posts
    1,819

    Can't do all electrcial more deenergized

    Some electrical work can not be done deenergized. Take for instance measuring voltages and currents. The Union and the NEC have a good point. Working on an energized circuit when the lights go out is more excitement than I need.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    3,100
    Quote Originally Posted by deedo1124 View Post
    Each fixture has an integral OC sensor. I assume it could be wired in parallel with the sensor.
    The problem with the pull chain is you will not know if the contacts are closed or not, the fixture is already on, and then when it's left on in the wrong position, the light stays on 24/7. I've had customers want OC sensors in electrical room, but NEC or not, Union or not, it's common sense not to put them there. You just have an unforeseen consequence of work being done outside of the electrical room. I just don't think your going to have a cheap solution to the problem.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    12
    A collegue sent me this link:

    http://www.nfpa.org/assets/files/pdf...ossary_a09.pdf

    From the NFPA's definition of automatic it would appear that an occupancy sensor requires human intervention and would not be considered automatic?

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •