Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Unauthorised Modifications to Electrical devices a sure fire way to get your self in major trouble

Recently on a Face Book Group for Fire Technicians  a Technician who also does burglar alarms and automation posted a print showing how to delay the alarm in a garage to allow a person to arm the system them get in car and leave with out setting off the alarm .
The problem he was doing an illegal and unauthorized modification of an electrical device  by doing so he was also doing work with 120 volts AC which means he must have an electrical license or otherwise be qualified to do this type of work depending on state he lives in.


The problem is the garage door opener is a UL listed piece of equipment when it is submitted for approval this is how it is to be built and maintained any modification violates the UL label and puts the person doing the illegal modification in serious trouble and fully civil as well as criminally liable should there be a fire , injury or god forbid death as a result  of the modification and since the work was not permitted to be done  the technicians insurance carrier will not provide them coverage as well.  I know of a  handy Man who lost his home and job and ended up committing suicide  over just such an incidence back in late 60's some one brought him an Electric Hedge Shear  which the trigger switch was not working he bypassed the safety switch  and drilled a hole in the case and attached an on/off snap switch problem solved or so he thought the neighbor took it home and couple weeks later when his son was using it to trim the hedges he fell and instead of his finger holding the safety switch and losing his grip and the safety switch shutting off the shear the shear stayed on and the boy lost 2 fingers . The handyman was sued and lost everything defending himself in court he lost his job because he spent so much time defending himself and after a court judgement of $300,000.00 against him meaning he would loose everything he put a gun to his temple.
Another man in rural county by us ended up facing Negligent Homicide charges after being a handy helper and fixing a fence charger and a young girl died after getting shocked by it and not being able to let go because he wired it wrong .
Any time you modify something electrical and do not do so properly you put your self in jeopardy.  Its not worth it  . This is why a professional will often turn down work when he knows its not something he is permitted to do. I have turned down many electrical jobs  for this exact same reason myself.
I warned this individual he is not permitted to do this type of work and he is liable if there's a problem  and just does not get it. He will when something goes wrong and an attorney researching the case  sees this article and his postings on face book . But some times people do not learn till they end up being sued. Seen it happen all too many times with people who think they know what they are doing with electric and should not be touching it. till its too late and then its run duck and cover and there calling me crying because they have gotten them selves in trouble and  what do I do now and i tell them you where warned  and I hang up the phone. It is just a matter of time till Neal , Frank  Andy or Jimmy will be calling me  and I have repeatedly warned them they should not be doing electrical work but they will never learn till they get burned by it.

No comments:

Post a Comment