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Illustrated Changes to the NEC, 2002 Edition - Part 1

Article 300

Wiring Methods

300.5 Underground Installations

Replace the word “service laterals” with “service conductors,” so that this section now reads:

(D) Protection from Damage.
(3) Service Conductors.
Service conductors (in a raceway or cable, or exposed) that are not encased in concrete, but are buried 18 in. or more, must have their location identified by a warning ribbon placed at least 12 in. above the underground installation. Figure 300–2
Intent: The intent of this editorial change, was to clarify that a warning ribbon is required for service conductors (exposed or in a raceway) buried more than 18 inches.

Author’s Comment: Often service lateral conductors are installed in nonmetallic conduit (which must have 18 in. of cover [Table 300.5]) by the electrical contractor; therefore, a warning ribbon must be placed at least 12 in. above the underground raceway.


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