North American Network Operators Group

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

  • From: Daryl Jurbala
  • Date: Fri Jul 27 12:24:26 2007

On Jul 26, 2007, at 6:59 PM, Randy Epstein wrote:

I guess my point was that it's safer to power off a UPS system as best you
can before you shoot water at it. :) Most likely you are doing this at
somewhat close proximity, with step-down transformers nearby, etc.

Somewhat true.

An EPO not only shuts down the power feed to the UPS, but the UPS as well.
Which is a good thing.

The batteries still make pretty colors when you hit them and start bridging things that shouldn't be bridged. But if it's not on fire, it is usually avoided by the fire department.

I'm posting on this as a 17 year volunteer fire department member as well as a professional (albeit part-time, with the rest of my time spent in network ops) fire marshal for a town in PA.

EPOs are great, and as a fire marshal I like them (preventative) but they really don't figure in to the picture when I've got my firefighter hat (ok, helmet) on - because we just cut mains to everything, and generally know what we're looking at and how to handle it. Any building in any reasonably juristiction that has any "real" sized UPS most likely has not only a pre-plan so the FD knows what is where, but also at least annual inspections. Chances are good the facility also has to hold a permit for the number/capacity of the batteries in the unit (per IFC 105.7.2) and most likely the fuel storage for the generators (IFC 105.6.16). Even in your jurisdiction doesn't use that code, IFC and/or it's ancestors provide the model code that most of the US operates on, so chances are high there are similar restrictions/procedures/permitting requirements.