The following was provided by Mr. Tarry Baker, Chief Code Compliance Officer (Electrical) Broward County Florida, (Ft. Lauderdale), email@example.com , 1-954-760-4500 X230.
National Electrical Code
NEC, Section 90.7. Examination of Equipment for Safety
NEC, Article 100 -- Definitions
Identified (as applied to equipment). Recognizable as suitable
for the specific purpose, function, use, environment, application, etc., where described
in a particular Code requirement.
Labeled. Equipment or materials to which has been attached a label, symbol, or other identifying mark of an organization that is acceptable to the authority having jurisdiction and concerned with product evaluation, that maintains periodic inspection of production of labeled equipment or materials, and by whose labeling the manufacturer indicates compliance with appropriate standards or performance in a specified manner.
Listed. Equipment, materials, or services included in a list
published by an organization that is acceptable to the authority having jurisdiction and
concerned with evaluation of products or services, that maintains periodic inspection
of production of listed equipment or materials or periodic evaluation of services, and
whose listing states that either the equipment, material, or services meets identified
standards or has been tested and found suitable for a specified purpose.
NEC, Section 110.2. Approval. The conductors and equipment
required or permitted by this Code shall be acceptable only if approved.
Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)
OSHA 29 CFR 1910.303 & 339, 1926.403B Definitions
(OSHA) Certified. Equipment is certified if it :
(OSHA) Labeled. Equipment is labeled if there is attached to it a label, symbol, or other identifying mark of a nationally recognized testing laboratory which:
(OSHA) Listed. Equipment is listed if it is of a kind mentioned in a list which:
NEC, Section 1103 Examination, Identification, Installation,
and Use of Equipment.
OSHA & NEC 1999, Section 110.3 (B) Installation
Occupational Safety and Health Administration
The NRTL Program requirements are in 29 CFR 1910.7, "Definition and requirements for a nationally recognized testing laboratory." To be recognized by OSHA, an organization must:
OSHA requires NRTL applicants (i.e., organizations seeking initial recognition as an NRTL) to provide detailed information about their programs, processes and procedures in writing when they apply for initial recognition. OSHA reviews the written information and conducts on-site assessments to determine whether the organization meets the requirements. OSHA uses a similar process when an NRTL (i.e., an organization already recognized) applies for expansion or renewal of its recognition. In addition, the Agency conducts annual audits to ensure that the recognized laboratories maintain their programs.
The NRTL Program is an effective public and private partnership. Rather than performing testing and certification itself, OSHA relies on private sector organizations to accomplish it. This helps to ensure worker safety, allows existing private sector systems to perform the work, and avoids the need for the government to maintain facilities.
Currently, there are 16 NRTLs operating 40 sites in the U.S., Canada, and the Far East. The NRTL Program has grown significantly in the past few years, both in terms of numbers of laboratories and sites, as well as the number of test standards included in their recognition.
OSHA has devoted significant resources in the last two years
to improving the management of the NRTL Program, ensuring its viability, and enhancing
its credibility with the public. This has included a process improvement project; audits
of all the NRTL sites; reduction of the backlog of applications for recognition, expansion,
and renewals; and development of application guidelines and information about our procedures
to help people understand the process of NRTL recognition. A web page on the NRTL Program
is now available to provide information about the recognized labs and the scope of their
recognition, as well as a description of the NRTL Program. We also have prepared a new
training program for our compliance staff to increase awareness within the Agency of NRTL
The size of the NRTL Program, and the amount of work involved in maintaining it, have resulted in large costs for the Agency, both in terms of human resources and in direct costs such as travel. For example, OSHA's goal is to audit every site once a year. This involves about 40 annual visits, given the current number of sites recognized, not only to locations in the U.S. but also to many foreign locations. Time and travel costs are obviously much higher for foreign locations. Because international trade in many of the types of products OSHA requires to be tested and certified is increasing substantially, the Agency anticipates there will be more applications for laboratories or sites in locations outside the U.S. In particular, under the terms of a recent Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA) with the European Union, a number of European laboratories are expected to submit applications for NRTL recognition.
The number of people who can be assigned to work in a particular area in OSHA, as well as the travel money that can be used, is dependent on the overall funding the Agency receives from Congress in a given year. The potential for reduced funding, leaving OSHA with inadequate money to properly implement the Program, led to discussions about the possibility of assessing fees. Having a consistent funding process related specifically to the time and travel needed to maintain the Program would help OSHA ensure that the NRTL Program can continue to function and can be perceived as a viable and credible part of OSHA's overall approach to workplace safety
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF LABOR
Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) OSHA Standards
Organizations Currently Recognized By OSHA as National Recognized Testing Laboratories (NRTL) As of December 16, 1999
1. Applied Research Laboratories, Inc. (ARL)
2. Canadian Standards International, Inc. (CSA) (800) 463-6727
3. American Gas Association Laboratories (AGA)
4. Communication Certification Laboratory, Inc. (CCL)
5. Detroit Testing Laboratory, Inc. (DTL)
6. Electro-Test, Inc. (ETI)
7. Entela, Inc. Engineering & Testing Laboratories (ENT)
8. Factory Mutual Engineering Corporation (FMRC)
9. ITS Intertek Testing Services NA Inc. (ITSNA) (formerly
10. MET Laboratories, Inc. (MET) (800) 321-4655
11. NSF International (NSF)
12. National Technical Systems, Inc. (NTS)
13. Southwest Research Institute (SWRI)
14. SGS U. S. Testing Company, Inc. (SGSUS) (formerly UST-CA)
15. TUV Rheinland of North America, Inc.
16. Underwriters Laboratories, Inc. (UL)
17. Wyle Laboratories (256) 837-4411 Fax: (256) 721-0144
TMO Update Contributed Editorial
Electrical Inspectors have an ally in enforcing their local regulations and the National Electrical Code where there are requirements for products to be Listed and Labeled in accordance with Section 90-7 of the NEC. Electrical Inspectors are required to assure that all products installed in their jurisdiction are safe and comply with the NEC. To assure this compliance many Inspectors must rely on a label that appears on the product to make their determination of compliance. When the label does not appear the Inspector is usually left with the unpopular option of turning down the product or the installation.
This requires the Electrical Inspector not only to be very observant about the installation he/she is inspecting but also the products that are being installed. Additionally, he/she must also determine that the label is acceptable in his/her jurisdiction and the product is compliant with Section 110-3b of the NEC. If an unlisted product goes undetected and it is a Hazard, the Electrical Inspector could be held accountable. This is an unreasonable burden to be place on an inspector.
OSHA Electrical Standard (Subpart S) requires that all electrical products installed in the work place be listed, labeled or otherwise determined to be safe by a Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory (NRTL). OSHA places the responsibility of this squarely on the Employer. OSHA, defines the building owner, facility or property owner as the employer.
The Electrical Inspector can require the contractor to remove an item not labeled in accordance with Section 90-7 or prevent the facility from opening, etc. OSHA, however can impose fines on the Employer of $7,000.00 to $70,000.00 for each violation. Often the Employer does not even know that a violation exists. OSHAs involvement would be more effective than the authority a inspector may exert and would also be a major benefit in assisting an inspector with his/her legal responsibilities. The best thing an inspector can do is defer to OSHA the determination that a product legally complies with the standard and Section 90-7 of the NEC. Assuring that as many cord connected or installed devices are properly listed and labeled during an inspection is deferring a lot of the inspectors responsibility over to OSHA.
The OSHA NRTL program has been in effect for five years. There are seven NRTLs certified to date with many applications pending. More cooperation between OSHA and inspectors are needed for this program to work. Electrical Inspectors could find the alliance with OSHA beneficial to them and the jurisdiction they represent.
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