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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Posts
    1,217

    Unhappy WA Home Inspector Apparently Electrocuted In Hot Tub He Installed

    This is a tragic story. I did not find the victim on the InspectionNews member list. I am not including the names of the victims; you can read them for yourself by clicking on the link to the article.

    Woman, Man Found Dead In Hot Tub Identified

    October 20, 2009

    FEDERAL WAY, Wash. -- Signs are pointing to an electrical accident as the cause of the deaths of two people found Sunday in a hot tub at a Federal Way-area home, but one victim's son questions that theory.

    . . .

    The medical examiner's office said it has not yet ruled on the cause of death for either person, but family and friends of (the female victim) said investigators have told them it was likely an electrical accident.

    (The male victim's) son . . said his dad was a home inspector who knew a lot about electricity and plumbing. He said his dad read a book on how to do plumbing and installed the hot tub himself.

    “He's had it five years and it hadn't had any problems. It seemed like a reliable hot tub. I've used it plenty of times myself," (the son) said.


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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
    Posts
    26,248

    Default Re: WA Home Inspector Apparently Electrocuted In Hot Tub He Installed

    "He said his dad read a book on how to do plumbing and installed the hot tub himself."

    As unfortunate as that is, that goes to show you that "reading a book" does not make one an "expert" on it.

    *IF* it does turn out to be an electrical problem, think of all of the pools, hot tubs, and spas he inspected and missed the same thing he did on his own installation.

    I am not making light of what happen, only that there may be many other installations ready for the same unfortunate outcome.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Charlotte NC Licensed in NC and SC
    Posts
    597

    Default Re: WA Home Inspector Apparently Electrocuted In Hot Tub He Installed

    Terrible tragedy......

    I have owned hot tubs for over 20 years, the 2nd one is nearing the end of its life now, just replaced some leaky pipes in it.

    There are many different configurations, some have a GFCI on the equipment cover where insects insert bits of mud in there causing the GFCI to stick or just go bad. Some of these are installed on regular house breakers since the spa "already has a GFCI". The test button may not be easily found and most people are not into testing things anyway.

    There should be two GFCI's on all portable spas regardless of what local code says.

    This made me go out and test mine, the spa one AND the branch circuit GFCI, both worked fine, I use the spa GFCI to turn the thing off when draining and refilling so it gets tested a few times a year.

    Bruce King, B.A. King Home Inspections, LLC
    www.BAKingHomeInspections.com
    Certified Master Inspector, Independent Inspectorwww.IndependentInspectors.org

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Rockwall Texas
    Posts
    4,519

    Default Re: WA Home Inspector Apparently Electrocuted In Hot Tub He Installed

    My son and his wife just purchased a portable hot tub a few months ago. He told me that a friend of a friend was coming over to hook up the electrical to it. I said no way in he77 was that going to happen. I called out a master electrician and had the work done and paid out of my own pocket for it.

    They had to install an additional panelboard which was an additional expense cause the hot tub required a 50amp GFCI and his main service panel did not have enough room for it.

    My son, his wife and my grandson will be in that thing so I wanted to know that it was done right.

    Worth every dime of it.

    rick


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Anacortes, Washington
    Posts
    395

    Default Re: WA Home Inspector Apparently Electrocuted In Hot Tub He Installed

    I have been around Washington HI's for a few years and never came across this guy. Its a very unfortunate accident and if age and working as a HI has taught me anything, its know your limits. Electrical looks easy, there are a lot a ways to do it wrong and have it appear to be OK and in the case of this hot tub be deadly wrong.

    Rick - In this part of the world there must be a service disconnect within sight of the hot tub. Usually its a sub with a GFCI breaker and others its just a disconnect but there always has to be a GFCI in the circuit.

    //Rick

    Rick Bunzel
    WWW.PacCrestInspections.com
    360-588-6956

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