Association News

Nearly Half of U.S. adopts electrical safety standards.

Press Release Summary:

Mar 27, 2009 - Since January of last year, building and legislative officials across country have embraced 2008 National Electrical Code®, including child electrical safety requirement. With 24 states operating under Code, growing numbers of children and families can benefit from continuous protection against electrical injuries. NEC Section 406.11 states that all 125 V, 15 and 20 A electrical outlets in new residential construction must be tamper-resistant receptacles.

National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) - Rosslyn, VA

Original Press Release

Support for 2008 NEC and Tamper-Resistant Electrical Outlets Comes to 24 States

Press release date: Mar 25, 2009

Nearly Half of U.S. has Adopted New Electrical Safety Standards within the Code's First Year

ROSSLYN, Va. March 25, 2009 - Since January of last year, building and legislative officials across the country have embraced the 2008 National Electrical Code® (NEC), including its new child electrical safety requirement. With 24 states operating under the new Code, growing numbers of children and families can benefit from continuous protection against electrical injuries.

NEC Section 406.11 states that all 125-volt, 15- and 20-ampere electrical outlets (receptacles) in new residential construction must be tamper-resistant receptacles. Each year, thousands of children suffer injuries caused by inserting objects into electrical outlets, and tamper-resistant receptacles protect against such incidents.

Using a built-in shutter system, tamper-resistant receptacles prevent foreign objects from touching electrically live components when they're inserted into the slots, but plugs can be inserted and removed just as with standard electrical outlets. Unlike plastic outlet caps, which can be removed or forgotten, tamper-resistant receptacles offer automatic, continuous and permanent protection against electrical burns.

As of Feb. 1, 2009, the Code had taken effect in Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Washington and Wyoming. Several Alabama, Illinois and Texas jurisdictions had also begun enforcement.

States expected to consider Code adoption in 2009 include Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, South Carolina and West Virginia.

Code adoption marks a great advancement for child electrical safety, and educating officials, medical experts and the general public has been a pivotal factor in raising awareness.

"Our field representatives and other Code supporters have advocated adoption at public hearings and facilitated many educational outreach efforts. They've been instrumental in helping people to understand how tamper-resistant receptacles can enhance child safety," said Andrei Moldoveanu, technical director at the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA). "We also commend the public officials for acknowledging home electrical hazards and the need for greater safety measures."

Building and electrical professionals wanting to learn about tamper-resistant receptacles, child safety statistics, and Code details can view an informational video and other resources at NEMA's Real Safety Web site: www.childoutletsafety.org. Additional information can be found at Electrical Safety Foundation International: esfi.org.

The NEC is an American National Standard developed by electrical safety experts under strict rules to ensure openness and broad representation by all interests. NEC adoption takes place on a state-by-state basis.

NEMA is the trade association of choice for the electrical manufacturing industry. Founded in 1926 and headquartered near Washington, D.C., its approximately 450 member companies manufacture products used in the generation, transmission and distribution, control, and end-use of electricity. These products are used in utility, medical imaging, industrial, commercial, institutional, and residential applications. Domestic production of electrical products sold worldwide exceeds $120 billion. In addition to its headquarters in Rosslyn, Virginia, NEMA also has offices in Beijing, Sao Paulo, and Mexico City.

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