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Hi to all. I'm new and this is my first post.
I'm doing an EICR on a 3 story building split into multiple offices to let.
One thing I noticed is t+e cables in plastic trunking almost throughout (switch/socket drops, across ceilings to lights etc).
Would this be a code 2 or 3? Also would same code be throughout or just in escape routes?
I understand it could potentially be dangerous (causing entanglement when melting/falling etc), but surely an EICR is regarding electrical safety and as far as I can see the installation is electrically safe!
Any views as it would be a massive job to correct.
Surely if its a C2 then most commercial buildings in the country would fail?
Should I just C3 it and suggest landlord gets a fire safety report done?
 
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Ian1981

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You are inspecting and testing an electrical installation to the current addition of bs 7671 and as such you are checking compliance with regulation 521.11.201 so a code needs applying to this regulation if found non compliant and is a safety concern.

I have applied a C2 to this in the past regarding numerous LV and ELV cables installed above suspended ceilings in escape routes where the cables where mearly supported by twin and earth loops screwed to the existing ceiling, some just screwed into the plasterboard.
If all that lot had come down then yes it’s potentially dangerous in my opinion.
If it’s just the odd piece of trunking without metallic or non combustible supports for the wiring then a C3 at the most if found in escape routes.
 
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Strima

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No code for the plastic trunking. However a definate C3 for cables likely to suffer premature collapse in the event of a fire.
 

Ian1981

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It will be interesting to see how this is coded when all wiring in an installation requires protection against premature collapse in a fire and the words escape route is removed, Christ make up your minds!
 
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  • #5
No cables are exposed as all are contained within trunking throughout the installation.
So you guys are saying I give it a C3 ? Im assuming that just applies to the escape routes (stairwells/corridoors etc) as per 521.11.201 and no coding for trunking across ceilings in all rooms.
 
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Adam W

According to my boss, who's really clued up on things like this, it's a C2 because the cables aren't supported by fire resistant fixings; following the normal thought process it would be a C3, ie it used to comply but doesn't any more, but apparently this is an exception because firefighters have died due to it.

Does it have to be a massive job to correct or could you put stainless steel cable ties and bases inside the plastic trunking?
 

Ian1981

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To be honest all the guidance written by the so called experts (NICEIC, best practice guide and I’ve read Napits code breakers guide) all do suggest a C2.
Me if it’s a high concentration of cables at risk of collapse then I C2 it.
A picece of yt2 in an escape route with say a twin and earth cable in it on its own C3 as I believe the risk is severely reduced.
As the inspector it lies with you.
 
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Thanks guys. Think I will take Ians advice and C2 the 'bulky' concentrations and C3 the odd little ones.
Then if Landlord agrees (and pays) I will secure the worst with stainless ties and bases inside the trunking as Adam suggests.
Cheers!
 
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Octopus

Thanks guys. Think I will take Ians advice and C2 the 'bulky' concentrations and C3 the odd little ones.
Then if Landlord agrees (and pays) I will secure the worst with stainless ties and bases inside the trunking as Adam suggests.
Cheers!
It’s irrelevent what the landlord thinks..... you are doing an EICR and any remedial work is up to them ........ the landlord is under no obligation to get anything done.
 
D

Deleted member 26818

Problem with this new requirement, is that the danger existed before the Regulation was introduced.
It now not only presents a danger but is also a non-compliance.
 
We were once told to fall withing fire regs the cable within the trunking had to be supported with something such as a butterfly clip every 300 or 900mm i cant remember what distance now. Is this correct?
 
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Adam W

Problem with this new requirement, is that the danger existed before the Regulation was introduced.
It now not only presents a danger but is also a non-compliance.
Surely you could say that about any changes to the regs?
For example previously RCD protection could be omitted if the installation was under the supervision of a skilled or instructed person, but since that was abused and disallowed the same circuit which previously didn't require RCD protection would now not be compliant.

The requirement for fire resistant supports doesn't have to be expensive or intrusive, as I mentioned earlier it could simply involve taking out a few screws and adding metal cable tie bases and cable ties. It doesn't even have to be all the way along, just every metre or so to keep the cables out of the way in the event of a fire.
 
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Deleted member 26818

There’s never been an exception to omit RCD protection to circuits.
My point is, that having cables anywhere (not just escape routes) which can fall down and entangle fire fighters has always been a dangerous situation warranting a code C2.
Just because there is now a specific requirement does not mean it should only warrant a code C3.
 
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A

Adam W

There’s never been an exception to omit RCD protection to circuits.
That was just the first example I could think of, but there has - as I said if the installation was under the supervision of skilled and instructed operatives, dedicated circuits for specific items of equipment, if a risk assessment was attached to the certificate, there may have been others.
It seems the 18th edition is largely about removing these 'loopholes'.
 
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Nigel

I think a C2 is too strong personally. But it is what the guidance notes suggest.

If the ceiling is fire boarded then a C3 surely.
 
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Deleted member 26818

There was an exception to omit RCD protection for cables concealed in walls if the installation was under the control of a skilled or instructed person.
There was also an exception to omit RCD protection for socket-outlets if their use by ordinary persons was supervised by a skilled or instructed person.
 

MDJ

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C2? rollox, there would be hundreds of millions of pounds worth of urgent work required in hundreds of thousands of properties, C3 at best, it was perfectly safe before they updated the Regs lol, the world wasn't going to end then.
 
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Octopus

As usual, ill thought out regs, poor communication and inconsistent application of codes..............................

Should we be surprised?
 
A

Adam W

We had a seminar today from one of the surveyors, which was largely about fire safety.
Apparently (unlike BS7671) fire regulations are retrospective, hence lack of fire resistant supports being a C2 and not a C3. I suppose the logic behind this is the best person to rectify it would be an electrician.
 

Ian1981

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C2? rollox, there would be hundreds of millions of pounds worth of urgent work required in hundreds of thousands of properties, C3 at best, it was perfectly safe before they updated the Regs lol, the world wasn't going to end then.
Tell that to the fire fighters families who lost loved ones due to falling cables and being entangled in them as a resulting investigation concluded that the death of a few fire fighters was caused by said entanglement hence the introduction of the regulation.
I think millions of properties is a bit far considering the requirement is escape routes only and 99% of the time domestic dwellings are not an issue due to the plaster board integrity of the ceilings.
I am all for the regulation and even the new requirement due out when the 18th edition is in full effect.
 

MDJ

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Bollox, the regs have changed thats all, no doubt some fire fighters have seen problems with wires hanging down, but I would say it is minimal, same as plastic DBs, there are millions, but one catches fire and suddenly they all need to be metal. I never said millions of properties, hundreds of thousands I said, open your eyes.
 
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Ian1981

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Bollox, the regs have changed thats all, no doubt some fire fighters have seen problems with wires hanging down, but I would say it is minimal, same as plastic DBs, there are millions, but one catches fire and suddenly they all need to be metal. I never said millions of properties, hundreds of thousands I said, open your eyes.
Hundreds of thousands then happy now?
The relevance of the regulation has obviously passed you by.
Wires hanging down!!
 
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MDJ

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I'm aware of the reasons of the regulation, and I understand why the regulation has been put into the bible, but coding a new regulation failure as a C2 which means action is required is total bollox, it must be a C3, I don't care what they suggest, if we coded every new reg which was not up to the latest ammendment as a c2 we would all need to have our homes rewired every 2 years. Regarding telling it to the families, even one fire fighter dying is a tragic, but seriously how many have died due to this? it cannot be so dangerous all of a sudden to make it a C2, if the case then insurance companies must refuse to insure houses, as they are not safe to live in, again total bollox.
 
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Adam W

Bollox, the regs have changed thats all, no doubt some fire fighters have seen problems with wires hanging down, but I would say it is minimal, same as plastic DBs, there are millions, but one catches fire and suddenly they all need to be metal. I never said millions of properties, hundreds of thousands I said, open your eyes, dick wipe.
Their names were Jim Shears and Alan Bannon.
This isn't someone's perception or scaremongering, it was an actual thing which happened, at Shirley Towers in Southampton:
Fire deaths lead to safety change - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-hampshire-30845937
Perhaps this is only seen as an important issue around here due to it's proximity.
 

MDJ

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As I said even one death a tragic situation, but lets be sensible here, as I said vertually every house in the country could be considered dangerous if cabling not secured properly near entrances and exits, the IEE, IMO have done right by including this new reg into the bible, but a C2 for this, nah not in my view, a C3 yes, but not a C2, total bollox.
 
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Adam W

It doesn't have to be a big job though Mike - a catenary wire spanned above a suspended ceiling with a few metal cable ties on it, and lives could be saved. What is so bad about that?
 

MDJ

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The idea of the reg as I have said is a good one, I am all for it, but telling thosands of people their homes are suddenly dangerous and not insurable due to a new reg stinks IMO, I understand all new homes need to adhere to this, and agree with it, but when a EICR is carried out on a home for sale for example and this is put in as a c2, it means the house need to have work done to it before it can get sold and that IMO due to a new reg is wrong, the coding should be a C3 not up to current regulations and no more.
 

Ian1981

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I'm aware of the reasons of the regulation, and I understand why the regulation has been put into the bible, but coding a new regulation failure as a C2 which means action is required is total bollox, it must be a C3, I don't care what they suggest, if we coded every new reg which was not up to the latest ammendment as a c2 we would all need to have our homes rewired every 2 years. Regarding telling it to the families, even one fire fighter dying is a tragic, but seriously how many have died due to this? it cannot be so dangerous all of a sudden to make it a C2, if the case then insurance companies must refuse to insure houses, as they are not safe to live in, again total bollox.
In the 60s lighting circuits here not required to have cpc’s installed.
I can only assume common sense or perhaps the amount of people receiving electric shocks prompted a drastic safety improvement.
Would you C3 this if exposed conductive parts where connected to the circuit without a cpc present?
As for the fire fighters, a change to the regulation and actually identifying a potential risk and danger may just save someone’s life during a fire and I think that’s worth it.
What’s someone’s life worth to you?
 

MDJ

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we are not talking about cabling without CPCs, and do not insult my intelligence about asking what I think someones life is worth, I have clarified my view.
 
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