Code of Virginia

Code of Virginia
Title 45.1. Mines and Mining
6/17/2019

Article 9. Electricity.

§ 45.1-161.279. Overhead high-potential power lines; surface transmission lines; electric wiring in surface buildings.

A. Overhead high-potential power lines shall be placed at least fifteen feet above the ground and twenty feet above driveways and haulage roads, shall be installed on insulators, and shall be supported and guarded to prevent contact with other circuits.

B. Surface transmission lines shall be protected against short circuits and lightning.

C. Electric wiring in surface buildings shall be installed so as to prevent fire and contact hazards.

Code 1950, §§ 45-82, 45-82.3; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-75; 1994, c. 28; 1996, c. 774.

§ 45.1-161.280. Transformers.

A. Unless surface transformers are isolated by elevation (eight feet or more above the ground), they shall be enclosed in a transformer house or surrounded by a suitable fence at least six feet high. If the enclosure or fence is of metal, it shall be grounded effectively. The gate or door to the enclosure shall be kept locked at all times, unless authorized persons are present.

B. Surface transformers containing flammable oil and installed where they present a fire hazard shall be provided with means to drain or to confine the oil in the event of rupture of the transformer casing.

C. Suitable danger signs shall be posted conspicuously at all transformer stations on the surface.

D. All transformer stations on the surface shall be kept free of nonessential combustible materials and refuse.

E. No electrical work shall be performed on low-voltage, medium-voltage, or high-voltage distribution circuits or equipment, except by a certified person or by a person trained to perform electrical work and to maintain electrical equipment under the direct supervision of a certified person. All high-voltage circuits shall be grounded before repair work is performed. Disconnecting devices shall be locked out and suitably tagged by the persons who perform electrical or mechanical work on such circuits or equipment connected to the circuits, except that in cases where locking out is not possible, such devices shall be opened and suitably tagged by such persons. Locks and tags shall be removed only by the persons who installed them or, if such persons are unavailable, by certified persons authorized by the operator or his agent. However, employees may, where necessary, repair energized trolley wires if they wear insulated shoes and lineman's gloves. This section does not prohibit certified electrical repairmen from making checks on or troubleshooting energized circuits or the performance of repairs or maintenance on equipment by authorized persons once the power is off and the equipment is blocked against motion, except where motion is necessary to make adjustments.

Code 1950, §§ 45-82 to 45-82.2; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, §§ 45.1-76, 45.1-78; 1993, c. 442; 1994, c. 28; 1996, c. 774; 1999, c. 256; 2005, c. 3.

§ 45.1-161.281. Grounding.

A. All metallic sheaths, armors, and conduits enclosing power conductors shall be electrically continuous throughout and shall be grounded effectively.

B. Metallic frames, casing, and other enclosures of stationary electric equipment that can become "alive" through failure of insulation or by contact with energized parts shall be grounded effectively or equivalent protection shall be provided.

C. When electric equipment is operated from three-phase alternating current circuits originating in transformers connected to provide a neutral point, a continuous grounding conductor of adequate size shall be installed and connected to the neutral point and to the frames of the power-utilizing equipment. Such grounding conductors shall be grounded at the neutral point and at intervals along the conductor if feasible. A suitable circuit breaker or switching device shall be provided having a ground-trip coil connected in series with the grounding conductor to provide effective ground-fault tripping.

1966, c. 594, § 45.1-79; 1994, c. 28.

§ 45.1-161.282. Circuit breakers and switches.

A. Automatic circuit breaking devices or fuses of the correct type and capacity shall be installed so as to protect all electric equipment and power circuits against excessive overload. Wires or other conducting materials shall not be used as a substitute for properly designed fuses, and circuit breaking devices shall be maintained in safe operating condition.

B. Operating controls, such as switches, starters, and switch buttons, shall be so installed that they are readily accessible and can be operated without danger of contact with moving or live parts.

C. Electric equipment and circuits shall be provided with switches or other controls of safe design, construction and installation.

D. Insulating mats or other electrically nonconductive material shall be kept in place at each power-control switch and at stationary machinery where shock hazards exist.

E. Suitable danger signs shall be posted conspicuously at all high-voltage installations.

F. All power wires and cables shall have adequate current-carrying capacity, shall be guarded from mechanical injury and installed in a permanent manner.

G. Power circuits shall be labeled to indicate the unit or circuit they control.

H. Persons shall stay clear of an electrically powered shovel or other similar heavy equipment during an electrical storm.

I. All devices installed on or after July 1, 2005, which provide either short circuit protection or protection against overload, shall conform to the minimum requirements for protection of electric circuits and equipment of the National Electric Code in effect at the time of their installation.

J. All electric conductors installed on or after July 1, 2005, shall be sufficient in size to meet the minimum current-carrying capacity provided for in the National Electric Code in effect at the time of their installation.

K. All trailing cables purchased on or after July 1, 2005, shall meet the minimum requirements for ampacity provided in the standards of the Insulated Power Cable Engineers Association -- National Electric Manufacturers Association in effect at the time such cables are purchased.

Code 1950, §§ 45-82, 45-82.1, 45-82.3, 45-82.4; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, §§ 45.1-78, 45.1-80, 45.1-81; 1978, c. 118; 1979, c. 315; 1993, c. 442; 1994, c. 28; 1999, c. 256; 2005, c. 3.

§ 45.1-161.283. Electrical trailing cables.

A. Trailing cables shall be provided with suitable short-circuit protection and means of disconnecting power from the cable.

B. Temporary splices in trailing cables shall be made in a workmanlike manner, mechanically strong, and well insulated.

C. The number of temporary, unvulcanized splices in a trailing cable shall be limited to one.

D. Permanent splices in trailing cables shall be made as follows:

1. Mechanically strong with adequate electrical conductivity and flexibility.

2. Effectively insulated and sealed so as to exclude moisture.

3. The finished splice shall be vulcanized or otherwise treated with suitable materials to provide flame-resistant properties and good bonding to the outer jacket.

E. Trailing cables shall be protected against mechanical injury.

Code 1950, § 45-82.5; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-84; 1978, c. 118; 1993, c. 442; 1994, c. 28.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of these sections may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.

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