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Topic Title: Draw out fuses and breakers
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Created On: 28 March 2013 04:18 PM
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 28 March 2013 06:08 PM
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rogersmith7671

Posts: 886
Joined: 04 November 2004

Re link to; crownoffice chambers, Et al.
Which tick box should we be concerned about? Do you think that as the claimants were dismissed, that in the future someone might try to blame a periodic tester for a fire caused by a faulty cut-out?

Regards
 28 March 2013 06:08 PM
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rogersmith7671

Posts: 886
Joined: 04 November 2004

Re link to; crownoffice chambers, Et al.
Which tick box should we be concerned about? Do you think that as the claimants were dismissed, that in the future someone might try to blame a periodic tester for a fire caused by a faulty cut-out?

Regards
 28 March 2013 06:31 PM
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jcm256

Posts: 1841
Joined: 01 April 2006

Form No 7 (page 106 guidance note 3)
1.0 Distributors / supply intake equipment
1.2 service head condition
1.3 conditions of service head
1.3 condition of tails - distributor
1.5 condition of metering equipment

Agree the court mentioned IR tests.
Could be they never seen the old cast iron ones.


(welcome comment about the withdrawal protective equipment)
 28 March 2013 07:18 PM
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rogersmith7671

Posts: 886
Joined: 04 November 2004

Of all of the appropriate tests mentioned in the judgement, thermal imaging (when on load) might be the only effective means of showing the condition of the service head, at the time of the test, so that any duty of care, Ect might be exercised. One of the common threads in the judgement was, that in each separate case the fire occurred shortly or soon after a routine meter reading. the meter readers where efflectively excused because the NWO's could not abrogate their responsibility of care and that it was not possible to detect any defects visually.
Even though the fires caused considerable damage the claimants where dismissed. The fires all clearly started at the cut-out/service head, but because it had not been established to the standard of proof required that any breach of the defendants duty of care caused the fires in any of the cases, the claims where dismissed. This was mainly because the distributors are protected from the results of their negligence by statute, under Section 2,subsection (c), of the Electricity Act 1989 as amended.
You may be right and some sort of similar disclaimer may need to be included in any future terms and conditions.

Regards

Edited: 28 March 2013 at 07:26 PM by rogersmith7671
 29 March 2013 04:07 PM
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kaichung

Posts: 369
Joined: 02 December 2003

Is there any reason that service cables are not correctly fused to start with?
The present system is dangerous, as you have an 800amp fuse protecting a thin service cable feed, if a fault develops, a major fire develops.
If the service cable feed was fused correctly to begin with, the fires would not have started in the first place.
If I were the judge, I would have found the DNO guilty of gross negligence.
What do you think?
 29 March 2013 05:41 PM
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weirdbeard

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Joined: 26 September 2011

Hi JCM, some interesting reading in that link.

(did you compose the post on another program, I think if you edit your post with a few spaces
and returns you should get it to fit this page, and hopefully the rest of the replies will follow suit)

I really do wonder how the suppliers equipment made it onto the EICR - as it is not subject to BS7671 I really don't see how can a deviation code be given against any percieved deficiency?

In my opinion this should be removed from the EICRs ASAP.

Prior to the ammendment surely any reasonable inspector would have noted any obvious deficencies in the suppliers equipment such as signs of overheating or broken enclosures and suchlike and recommend the relevant authorities are notified as a matter of course?

Like the smell of an overheated bakelite cutout, this whole issue seems a bit fishy to me!
 29 March 2013 07:37 PM
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jcm256

Posts: 1841
Joined: 01 April 2006

Originally posted by: weirdbeard

Hi JCM, some interesting reading in that link.



(did you compose the post on another program, I think if you edit your post with a few spaces

and returns you should get it to fit this page, and hopefully the rest of the replies will follow suit)
..................................................................................................................
(Reposted the original post)

From the year dot until present, the withdrawal method is the preferred method
(or only method up to 100amp supplies) of isolating the mains supply, the cutout
or service head has been around for a long time. For larger supplies when the
consumers supply the cutout is it the case on this statement below:

(A circuit breaker used to receive supply direct from the electricity supplier's
transformer should normally be of draw-out type. An isolator may be used in
conjunction with a fixed type circuit breaker provided that it is mechanically
interlocked with the circuit breaker).

We could have moulded case circuit breakers, or intelligent moulded case circuit
breakers with ratings from m125A to 800A in three or four pole versions. Is there
any regulation that say must be draw-out type. If it is not a withdrawal type or not
have any other feature as above, is it worthy of a comment.

Some types of draw out breakers shown on the web site below:


http://www.google.co.uk/search...uit+breaker&hl=

en&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=dPhSUab0EsXXPMrbgfgF
&ved=0CGYQsAQ&biw=1024&bih=595


Only for information:

Bit of a controversy (website below), who does actually inspect the cutouts;
lot f chaps in court grasping the bar in this court case. Be careful when you
tick that tick box on an EICR they may have craftily hoisted that responsibility
on to you

www.crownofficechambers.com/assets/docs/news/smith_-v-_edf.doc

I really do wonder how the suppliers equipment made it onto the EICR - as it is not subject to BS7671 I really don't see how can a deviation code be given against any percieved deficiency?



In my opinion this should be removed from the EICRs ASAP.



Prior to the ammendment surely any reasonable inspector would have noted any obvious deficencies in the suppliers equipment such as signs of overheating or broken enclosures and suchlike and recommend the relevant authorities are notified as a matter of course?



Like the smell of an overheated bakelite cutout, this whole issue seems a bit fishy to me!
 29 March 2013 07:40 PM
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weirdbeard

Posts: 1456
Joined: 26 September 2011

Well you've made a proper mess of that lot! I said edit, not delete and add your post to mine!!!!
 29 March 2013 07:43 PM
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weirdbeard

Posts: 1456
Joined: 26 September 2011

JCMs original post for anyone whos confused:



Originally posted by: jcm256



From the year dot until present, the withdrawal method is the preferred method

(or only method up to 100amp supplies) of isolating the mains supply, the cutout

or service head has been around for a long time. For larger supplies when the

consumers supply the cutout is it the case on this statement below:



(A circuit breaker used to receive supply direct from the electricity supplier's

transformer should normally be of draw-out type. An isolator may be used in

conjunction with a fixed type circuit breaker provided that it is mechanically

interlocked with the circuit breaker).



We could have moulded case circuit breakers, or intelligent moulded case circuit

breakers with ratings from m125A to 800A in three or four pole versions. Is there

any regulation that say must be draw-out type. If it is not a withdrawal type or not

have any other feature as above, is it worthy of a comment.



Some types of draw out breakers shown on the web site below:





http://www.google.co.uk/search...uit+breaker&hl=

en&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=dPhSUab0EsXXPMrbgfgF

&ved=0CGYQsAQ&biw=1024&bih=595





Only for information:



Bit of a controversy (website below), who does actually inspect the cutouts;

lot f chaps in court grasping the bar in this court case. Be careful when you

tick that tick box on an EICR they may have craftily hoisted that responsibility

on to you



www.crownofficechambers.com/assets/docs/news/smith_-v-_edf.doc





 29 March 2013 07:48 PM
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jcm256

Posts: 1841
Joined: 01 April 2006

Yes, I made a hash of that sorry, my computer the edit button was covered, I know how to correct this fault now with the view button but to late for this one.
Thanks
jcm
 29 March 2013 08:24 PM
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jcm256

Posts: 1841
Joined: 01 April 2006

weirdbeard, I agree with you this supply intake inspection is asking a bit much, however would be useful if Smart meters spread into every home (unless they are smart enough to detect a problem) or someone else checks equipment on a regular basis. To comply with what the courts think of not carrying out a duty to inspect, maybe a infra - red test should have been added to
Form No 7 (page 106 guidance note 3)
1.0 Distributors / supply intake equipment
1.2 service head condition
1.3 conditions of service head
1.3 condition of tails - distributor
1.5 condition of metering equipment

Extract from:

www.crownofficechambers.com/assets/docs/news/smith_-v-_edf.doc

The Complaints
1. Allegations of negligent installation having been abandoned, there remained essentially the following breaches of duty pleaded and maintained against the Defendants:
(a) failure to institute or carry out adequate visual or other inspection of the supply cables, the cut-out fuses or the connections between them;
(b) failure to replace cut-out fuses after 25 years in service;
(c) failure to supervise, review or monitor the work of meter readers;
(d) failure to collate adequate data in relation to the assets and to instances of fires involving cut-out fuses and/or to analyse it properly.
These complaints overlap to some extent. For instance, the failure to replace cut-out fuses partly stems from a failure to collate adequate data about what cut-out fuses were in what properties.
2. The failure relating to visual or other inspections breaks down into a number of complaints:
(a) a failure to carry out quinquennial (five yearly) inspections;
(b) a failure to carry out biennial (two yearly) inspections;
(c) a failure to implement the use of temperature strips on the equipment which would or might indicate to an appropriate person inspecting that the assembly in question was or might be overheating;
(d) a failure to implement a practice by inspectors of touching the assembly to see if it was producing excessive heat;
(e) a failure to use infra-red or thermal imaging cameras to determine if excessive heat was being produced in the assembly.
 29 March 2013 09:03 PM
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weirdbeard

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Joined: 26 September 2011

Hi jcm, really though I don't think periodic infra-red or thermal imaging would necessarily help prevent these kinds of incidents, but i really think there should be some form of inspection and possibly some kind of declaration of previous inspections to aid judgement for BS7671 inspectors, by the owners of the equipment. (Information such as fuse size, earthing arrangement and expected Ze should be available upon request, but would it be such a big job to provide this info on a sticker at the cutout? )

I guess the draw backs of say 5 or 10 yearly inspections to check internal condition and terminal tightness in a cutout would be that that the customer looses power for that time, or to take a thermal image would require that normal max loads (not abnormal- ie everything possible gets switched on) and these scenarios are not readily practicable without some major organisation. if you consider there are 26 million+ households and whoknows how many business premises

Certainly from the info given it does seem that there is particular concern over older installations where the cutout is situated inside the property rather than the more modern external meter cabinet - it could be recommended that it is safer to have the cutout moved to an external position, but would professional indemnity insurance cover this kind of situation if the inspector is not competent to give advice or recommendations on equipment that is not covered by BS7671?
 30 March 2013 07:19 PM
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jcm256

Posts: 1841
Joined: 01 April 2006

Right enough weirdbeard don't see really why that list of stuff to inspect at the supply equipment should be on a EICR sheet as there is a statutory duty on the suppliers, although now fragmented who does it as there is now different suppliers or different meter operators in the mix.

Electricity Safety, Quality and Continuity Regulations place a statutory duty on supplier to inspect their equipment and keep records 10years for substations, although:
.
(Duty holders should note that DTI does not expect inspection records of metering or service equipment to be maintained for the minimum ten year period.)

But this is where on the EICR it is needed, to let landlords comply with statutory regulations, you inadvertently complete and sign that part of statutory duty for them.

Extract from the Electricity Safety, Quality and Continuity Regulations
meter operator

This term includes all persons installing or maintaining meters situated at or near the supply terminals (see definition). Therefore distributors or landlords who install metering equipment would be caught within the scope of the definition and must comply with the appropriate requirements

Regards
jcm
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