OSHA requirements are set by statute, standards and regulations. Our interpretation letters explain these requirements and how they apply to particular circumstances, but they cannot create additional employer obligations. This letter constitutes OSHA's interpretation of the requirements discussed. Note that our enforcement guidance may be affected by changes to OSHA rules. Also, from time to time we update our guidance in response to new information. To keep apprised of such developments, you can consult OSHA's website at http://www.osha.gov.

April 5, 2004

Mr. Kent Davis
ARC Electric, Inc.
500 Woodlake Dr., Suite 105
Chesapeake, VA 23320

Re: Minimum distance between supports for temporary wiring; §1926.405.

Dear Mr. Davis:

This is in response to your letter of March 24, 2004, to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) concerning §1926.405 "Wiring Methods, components, and equipment for general use."

You call our attention to a statement we made in our
October 4, 2000, letter to Ms. DesRosier. That letter refers to a minimum distance between supports that secure temporary cable; specifically, we stated, "Cable shall be secured in place at intervals not exceeding 4½ feet and within 12 inches from every cabinet, box or fitting."

It has come to our attention that Ms. DesRosier was not inquiring about the minimum interval at which temporary cable should be secured; rather, she sought clarification about the propriety of using Romex-style (nonmetallic-sheathed) cable. Further, changes to the National Electric Codebook (NEC) have resulted in a need for us to reexamine the question of minimum securing distances for temporary cables.

In light of this information, we will modify our response to Ms. DesRosier by striking out the above-quoted sentence. We are now in the process of reviewing the issue and will issue an interpretation on it as soon as the review is complete.

If you need additional information, please contact us by fax (202-693-1689) at: U.S. Department of Labor, OSHA, Office of Construction Standards and Guidance. You can also contact us by mail at U.S. Department of Labor, OSHA, Office of Construction Standards and Guidance, Room N3468, 200 Constitution Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20210, although there will be a delay in our receiving correspondence by mail.

Sincerely,

 

Russell B. Swanson, Director
Directorate of Construction