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Flexible Cords and Cables shop inspection:

I completed an extension cord inspection yesterday and took 12 cords out of service for various reasons. I then instruced "Joe" the maintenance man to cut off all of the offending parts so they would not be used prior to repair. I proceeded to order new plugs and sockets.

Later that day Joe came in to discuss the repair of chaffed and insulation damged cords. These cords would need to be cut and spliced to make the repair. I faithfully recited 29 CFR 1910.305(g)(2)(ii): Only continuous lenghts without splices or taps. Service cords 14awg and large may be repaired if spliced so that the splice retains the insulation, outer sheath properties, and usage characteristics of the cord being spiced. (Those of us who work in the water treatment industry like intact extension cords with GFCI protection.)

So it seems to me it would be extremely difficult to repair an extension cord that retains its characteristics as purchased. Joe disagreed and brought me insulated butt splice connectors and a piece of heat shink which he says, "Meets the OSHA requirement and the cords could be repaired".

I say if the cord insulation or sheath properties have been compromised the cord can not be fixed, throw it out.
Joe say the cord can be fixed and restored to their original properties.

Who's is correct? Can an extension cord be spliced to satisfy the OSHA regulation?

Bragging rights are on the line for this Safety Coordinator.

Views: 9583

Replies to This Discussion

Excellent response Laurel.......I agree.

Toss em and replace em!
Best to just take them out of service and cut them up. Repirs are temporary and I never trust them on electrical gear.
Throughout the OSHA standards, they allow people to take actions that may appear to be short cuts or less safe methods. The catch comes when you read the requirements to take such actions.

OSHA specifies such requirements in such a fashion that creates a situation where it is much easier to do it right the first time and follow the recommended practice. In this case, it is to discard and replace. The toughest point in the repair is the qualified person (assumed to be a licensed electrician) and testing.

To demonstrate compliance to this requirement you should document their qualifications, the verification procedures, the calibration of all test equipment used, and the traceability of the actions. I would assume that these documented records must be maintained for the life of the cord and beyond. There is not a requirement for such documentation, but how else can you prove you complied. Easier to discard and replace.

The answer “we make them in the shop” does not hold much water with the Compliance Officer as they begin to drill you for the answers or in a Worker’s Compensation Hearing following an electrocution.
We always replaced ours. My greater concern was to determine how the damage occurred. What was the damage? Crush? Cut? How did it occur? If a cord was cut, crushed or otherwise damaged the placement of the replacement cord needs to be reviewed.
Absolutely and thanks for reminding me of what is important


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