Mark C. Ode

Fire/Life Safety Columnist and Code Contributor

Mark C. Ode is a staff engineering associate at Underwriters Laboratories Inc., based in Peoria, Ariz. He can be reached at 919.949.2576 and

Articles by Mark C. Ode

August 2003
Supplemental and supplementary grounding electrodes are very similar in name but vastly different in their permitted uses. Understanding the differences in these two electrodes can be critical in providing a safe, Code-compliant installation. Grounding electrodes provide four basic functions in a grounded electrical system and are extremely important for the safe operation of the system. READ MORE
June 2003
A luminaire is defined in Article 100 as “a complete lighting unit consisting of a lamp or lamps together with the parts designed to distribute the light, to position and protect the lamps and ballast (where applicable), and to connect the lamps to the power supply.” Since luminaires (lighting fixtures) were not previously defined before the 2002 NEC, this new definition is meant to cover all aspe READ MORE
May 2003
Article 305 for temporary wiring in the 1999 National Electrical Code has been relocated to Article 527 covering temporary installations in the 2002 NEC. At first glance, relocating an article from Chapter 3 to Chapter 5 would appear to be a subtle change with little effect on temporary installations. However, this change does affect the use of NM cable as a temporary wiring method. READ MORE
March 2003
Article 422 of the 2002 National Electrical Code covers electrical appliances used in dwellings, commercial facilities and some industrial installations. Many appliances utilize only electrical power. READ MORE
January 2003
It is extremely important to provide a safe and clear means of egress from electrical equipment and to ensure a worker’s ability to quickly exit an area during an electrical explosion and fire. The 2002 National Electrical Code (NEC) has added some necessary requirements to provide that safety. READ MORE
November 2002
Lightning has caused man to marvel since the beginning of time. One can almost visualize the fear and awe that lightning elicited in primitive man. Today, even with all of our knowledge about lightning, we are still fascinated with the raw power and the incredible pyrotechnic light shows of a lightning storm. READ MORE
October 2002
Article 680 covering swimming pools, fountains and similar installations has been totally rewritten for the 2002 National Electrical Code (NEC). Over the past NEC cycles, this article has grown substantially in size and a major rewrite was needed to make it easier to understand and use. READ MORE
September 2002
There are many major changes in the 2002 National Electrical Code (NEC), but none will affect more installations than the change involving motor disconnect locations. READ MORE
August 2002
Smoke detectors (alarms) are installed in single-family dwellings to provide early warning of a fire. Their installation is required by building codes in many municipalities and by many fire departments. NFPA 72, the National Fire Alarm Code, provides guidance for the proper selection, installation, operation, testing and maintenance of smoke detector systems. READ MORE