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Old 09-10-2011, 10:01 AM   #1
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Plug outlet location in a new school


I am a teacher in an Ontario school and our school board is almost finished building our new school. I visited the school to set up my classroom and while placing my computer, I realized that there were very few outlets available. I have attached a copy of the room layout:

[IMG]C:\Documents and Settings\Pat\Desktop\Classroom[/IMG]

I know that in RESIDENTIAL wiring, plug outlets must be located such that no point on the perimeter of the wall is more than 6 feet from an outlet. On the East interior wall, the desk is about 12 feet from the centrally placed outlet. On the North exterior wall, there are NO outlets. The windows on this wall are placed 4 feet off the floor.

My question is: Is this a violation of the Building Electrical Code for Schools?
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Old 09-10-2011, 10:15 AM   #2
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Plug outlet location in a new school


I don't know about the CEC, but under the NEC in the US, commercial receptacle locations are not specified like they are in a residential setting.

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Old 09-10-2011, 10:50 AM   #3
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Plug outlet location in a new school


Are you suggesting that your school was not wired to code?

+1 to Jim's post. There is NO code minimum on this.
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Old 09-10-2011, 11:01 AM   #4
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Plug outlet location in a new school


I can't imagine that the school does not comply with the electrical code but based on the scarcity of outlets, I have to wonder. It seems bizarre that plug outlet locations are so specific in residential wiring, yet not even addressed in commercial wiring. To make matters worse, our school board does not allow the use of extension cords on a "permanent" basis (ie I could not run an extension cord from my computer to the outlet). Thanks for your reply.
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Old 09-10-2011, 11:37 AM   #5
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Plug outlet location in a new school


Quote:
Originally Posted by prb_nearnorth View Post
I can't imagine that the school does not comply with the electrical code but based on the scarcity of outlets, I have to wonder.
$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

It's also the stuff you don't see. I bet they spared no expense on lighting fixtures.






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Originally Posted by prb_nearnorth View Post
To make matters worse, our school board does not allow the use of extension cords on a "permanent" basis (ie I could not run an extension cord from my computer to the outlet).
My wife's school is the same way. Every year at inspection time they get "the talk".
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Old 09-10-2011, 12:14 PM   #6
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Plug outlet location in a new school


The usage and layout of commercial spaces changes too much or is not known when the electrical is installed. Even if the locations were specified there is a good chance they still would not be where desired or needed.
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Old 09-10-2011, 01:57 PM   #7
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Plug outlet location in a new school


You are right about the light fixtures -- they are on motion sensors (turn on when you enter the room and off when the room is vacated after a while). Which is a good thing since this is supposed to be an eco-school.

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Old 09-10-2011, 02:23 PM   #8
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Plug outlet location in a new school


Well if you are trying to power a computer, bring in an exercise bike, tie it to a generator and have the kids take turns peddling while you work, now that is eco freindly, at the same time a good calorie burner.

Its a little tougher when you have to do work and there are no kids around.......
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Old 09-12-2011, 08:29 PM   #9
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Thanks for all of the responses to this thread.
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Old 09-14-2011, 04:08 PM   #10
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Plug outlet location in a new school


Have no clue about code, but:

Most schools have power strips for computers and items. There are some power strips with VERY long cords. So, instead of a 3ft cord, there are some with 20ft cords that would hopefully reach.

The school should be able to supply you with this, as its for the school computer.
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Old 09-14-2011, 04:45 PM   #11
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Plug outlet location in a new school


prb, in Ontario the Ontario Electrical Safety Code applies, and in this situation, the posters are correct, there is no requirement for the number of receptacles or their placement, like there is in residential situations. I feel your pain, like Jim Port said - even if things are specified ahead of time, there is a good chance they won't end up where you want; I had the architect specify two duplex receptacles every 3' along one wall (for a room that was to be a computer lab)... the electrician installed a total of 1 on the wall. Luckily I caught the problem before we accepted the building, and they had him come back and add the receptacles at no additional cost to us (since they were in the original plans).

You should be able to get your building management to arrange to add more for you. Power strips and extension cords are not permitted, and the ESA inspector will demand their removal.

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