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IEEE Commemorates Historic 100th Year of the National Electrical Safety Code® (NESC®)

IEEE, the world's largest professional organization advancing technology for humanity, announced today that a preprint of the 2017 National Electrical Safety Code® (NESC®), one of the world’s most widely adopted safety codes, will be open for comment one hundred years after the NESC was first introduced in August 1914. IEEE Standards Association (IEEE-SA) will publish and open commentary on a preprint of proposed changes to the 2017 Edition of the NESC beginning on 1 September 2014.

Produced exclusively by IEEE, which serves as the secretariat for the National Electrical Safety Code, the NESC specifies best practices for the safety of electric supply and communication utility systems at both public and private utilities. Revised every five years, the commentary period also marks the next phase of consideration of proposed revisions to the long-standing code.

“2014 is a major milestone for the NESC, which has continually evolved in the last century and quite literally helped save lives. To remain realistic, practical and useful in the face of new developments, technologies and challenges in the industry, NESC is constantly being refined,” said Mike Hyland, NESC chair. “Today’s NESC is a relevant, essential resource that protects the public, electrical professionals, equipment and property.”

Early electric supply and communications systems were isolated in nature, without standardized specifications addressing clearances, materials strength, construction methods, or operations. The resulting safety hazards for workers and the public alike led to a congressional mandate for the National Bureau of Standards (NBS), the first NESC Secretariat, to promulgate national standard practices in the NESC. In continuous use since its inception in August 1914, the NESC is adopted or otherwise used in every state of the United States of America and is also used in more than 100 countries worldwide.

“The NESC has and will continue to evolve to meet the contemporary needs of emerging technologies and changing industry demands,” said Allen Clapp, former NESC chair and editor of the NESC Handbook: A Discussion of the National Electrical Safety Code. “The revision process is an open invitation to the businesses and industries that rely on the NESC, giving them both a say in the code’s future and ensuring it remains a robust document that helps to better ensure safety. We celebrate the NESC’s long history of keeping utilities safe and efficient, and we look forward to continuing this effort for another 100 years.”

On 1 September 2014, a preprint of the change proposals for incorporation into the 2017 Edition of NESC will be published and distributed by IEEE-SA. This eight-month open commentary period, which closes on 1 May 2015, will allow interested parties to review, affirm, or suggest additional changes to the code proposals, revising the NESC 2012 edition. For more information, please visit the NESC webpage.

IEEE-SA will also mark the NESC’s 100th year by posting interesting NESC facts and milestones through its social media channels. To learn more about IEEE-SA or the NESC as it progresses into the next century, visit us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/ieeesa, follow us on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/ieeesa, connect with us on LinkedIn at http://www.linkedin.com/groups?gid=1791118, or on the Standards Insight Blog at http://www.standardsinsight.com.

About the IEEE Standards Association

The IEEE Standards Association, a globally recognized standards-setting body within IEEE, develops consensus standards through an open process that engages industry and brings together a broad stakeholder community. IEEE standards set specifications and best practices based on current scientific and technological knowledge. The IEEE-SA has a portfolio of over 900 active standards and more than 500 standards under development. For more information visit http://standards.ieee.org/.

About IEEE

IEEE, a large, global technical professional organization, is dedicated to advancing technology for the benefit of humanity. Through its highly cited publications, conferences, technology standards, and professional and educational activities, IEEE is the trusted voice on a wide variety of areas ranging from aerospace systems, computers and telecommunications to biomedical engineering, electric power and consumer electronics. Learn more at http://www.ieee.org.

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