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03-20-2009, 01:09 PM #1
I was finishing up an inspection yesterday when my client's 4 year old son playing in the back yard unearthed a water hose in some damp soil . The hose was "HOT". Thank G-D no one was hurt. The wiring was not connected to a breaker or fuse.
03-20-2009, 03:13 PM #2
Now that's really something using garden hose for a conduit! Just when you think you've heard it all.
My question is this: How do you know the circuit was not "protected" by a fuse or CB? Did you trace it back to the line side of a main breaker?
In any event, the child was very fortunate not to have been electrocuted.
03-20-2009, 03:18 PM #3
shut off the main..100amp breaker..water hose still hot..CRAZY
03-20-2009, 03:38 PM #4
My guess ... stray currents caused by the electrical power company service using earth ground as a return current path (yes, it really is used that way) ... those stray currents have induced a current/voltage into those conductors just like happens to pool shells, pool water, and pool bonding systems.
Recent thread with some posts about this same thing.
03-20-2009, 05:51 PM #5
Probably "borrowing" power from a neighbor.....
" I'll just plug this garden hose into your power panel Mrs. Smith....."
03-20-2009, 06:05 PM #6
We need to be careful about relying on those non-contact voltage sniffers (I have one and use it) to form final conclusions about voltage conditions.
Mine will alarm with static from my shirt or jacket. It is a good first indicator, but the voltage might have been induced. A wire just laying on the ground below an active high voltage source can have enough induced voltage to indicate "hot". Not saying this situation is not a problem, but it may not be connected to a power supply.
03-20-2009, 06:21 PM #7
One way I used to verify that was to compare the area around it for the same reading, if not, that induced voltage/current would be quite unlikely.
One time I walked into a rear yard to check an above ground pool and my voltage sniffer went off, I was getting ready to write the pool up to have checked out by an electrician when, as I turned to make my notes, I realized my sniffer was still going off.
No matter where I walked around in that back yard, if I reached down low to about foot above the ground, the sniffer would go silent. Any higher and it would go off.
Across the rear property line was the utility easement with medium tension power lines. I felt sure that was the cause. If I walked from the back yard toward the front yard, my sniffer would also go silent.
03-20-2009, 06:28 PM #8
I have not seen it but I'll bet there is a clip on Utube of a florescent tube lit-up in someones hand below a high tension wire. I have wanted to try this myself ever since I heard of it but never got up the nerve.
I bet those helicopter transmission service guys could tell some tales.