North American Network Operators Group

Date Prev | Date Next | Date Index | Thread Index | Author Index | Historical

Re: Why do we use facilities with EPO's?

  • From: George William Herbert
  • Date: Wed Jul 25 19:20:56 2007

>I've always wondered who died or was injured and caused the EPO to 
>come in to existence.  There have been lots of "EPO caused downtime" 
>stories, but does anyone on the NANOG list even have one single 
>"Thank God for the EPO" story?  I'll feel better about the general 
>state of the world if I know that the EPO actually has a real valid 
>use that has been ACTUALLY PROVEN IN PRACTICE rather than just in 
>someone's mind.
>-Jerry   <----Is so anti EPO, he has no remote EPO buttons, and even 
>has the irrational fear about the jumper on the "EPO terminal strip" 
>inside his UPSes coming undone.

A friend of mine is a volunteer firefighter (and ex-ISP CEO, used
to be on the list).  I'm not sure that he'd voluntarily enter
a burning datacenter to put it out if there wasn't an EPO.
Firefighters won't use water on live electrical fires.

If your response plan to a fire in the datacenter is "the building burns
down and hope nobody's inside it still" then you're set.

I've seen someone electrocuted and frozen on the wire in a non-datacenter
setting; we flipped the building breaker, which was further than
an EPO would have been.  It wasn't through his chest, and was only
110 V, so it probably didn't make a difference that it took a
minute to turn it off instead of 10 seconds.  There were no severe
burns, etc.

I've seen equipment catch on fire in a datacenter.  If I hadn't
been able to cut off the power locally, the EPO was the last
line of defense...

People I know have hit the EPO when sprinklers discharged in the

If you're lucky these won't happen to you.  But that's not why
safety rules are put in place.  Unluck happens.

-george william herbert
[email protected]