Administrative Code

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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 6. Criminal Justice and Corrections
Agency 15. Department of Corrections
Chapter 81. Standards for Planning, Design, Construction, and Reimbursement of Local Correctional Facilities

6VAC15-81-1010. Electrical.

A. All wiring, conductors, and control tubing shall be concealed to the greatest extent possible.

1. Where wiring is exposed and accessible by inmates, it shall be housed in intermediate metal conduit (IMC) or rigid metal conduit (RMC) with threaded fittings.

2. Rigid nonmetallic conduit (PVC or CPVC) shall not be used above ground floor slab within the secure perimeter except when encapsulated in concrete or grouted concrete masonry units. For transitions, rigid nonmetallic conduit may extend not more than six inches above floor.

3. Flexible metallic conduit not exceeding six feet in length shall be allowed above ceilings.

4. Flexible conduit, if required for a moving part of a device (e.g., pan-tilt-zoom camera), shall not exceed 12 inches exposed and shall be liquid tight or equivalent.

5. Electrical metallic tubing (EMT) and other types of conduits are not permitted within the secure perimeter.

B. The intensity of artificial lighting shall be in accordance with the requirements of 6VAC15-40, Minimum Standards for Jails and Lockups.

C. Standby power.

1. A standby power source shall be provided sufficient to sustain, as a minimum, life safety operations, security systems, refrigerators, and freezers.

a. "Life safety operations" means the function of certain electrical, mechanical, and other building equipment provided for the purpose of ensuring the life, health, and safety of building occupants in an emergency situation.

b. Fuel capacity shall be provided for a minimum of 72 hours of operation without refueling.

c. Consideration shall be given to emergency power for nonemergency lighting.

2. Consideration shall be given to protection of generators, standby power source, and fuel sources from unauthorized access or damage by location, fencing, or enclosure.

D. Light fixtures.

1. The security level of fixtures shall be consistent with the security level of the area where located.

2. Security light fixtures shall be surface mounted to any ceiling that is the secure perimeter. Exception: Security fixtures that are designed for, integral to, and maintain the security level of the ceiling, which is not the secure perimeter, may be recessed.

3. Fixtures installed in nonsecure lay-in ceilings may be standard fixtures with vandal resistant lenses.

4. Suspended ceiling mounted lighting fixtures in maximum and medium security housing units shall be supported from the structure above with threaded rods, independent of any ceiling grid or framework.

E. Placement of receptacles and lighting switches in individual cells is discouraged. Consideration should be given for access to power for medical devices.

F. Surge protection shall be provided on power supplies for electrically powered systems and service to include those that leave the building.

G. Lightning protection with a UL Master Certification is required for the facility.

Statutory Authority

§§ 53.1-5, 53.1-80, and 53.1-82 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Volume 34, Issue 12, eff. March 8, 2018.

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