Questions Raised After Permian High School Swimmers Shocked 9/5/13
September 5, 2013
Odessa - After Wednesday’s shocking incident at Permian High School sent three students to the emergency room, many are questioning if the pool is up to code. Although many of our questions have yet to be answered, we have been told that ECISD has the whole school inspected every year. School officials say they have never been notified of anything being wrong in the pool area, but CBS 7 uncovered some regulations that caught our attention.
Wednesday’s accident happened due to the pool being overfilled causing it to overflow onto some electrical equipment, which resulted in a few swimmers getting shocked. In a press release put out by the school, public information officer Mike Adkins says, “The coaches realized the water in the pool had overflowed and run into a power cord plugged into the pool’s sound system, which is about fourteen feet from the side of the pool.”
According to the National Fire Protection Association's Electric Code, “Any cord and plug-connected equipment …must have a copper equipment grounding conductor.” Also known as an EGC. Officials with the school could not confirm if the power cord was grounded or not but did add that each year the school has not failed an inspection. The most recent inspection made by the county was done two weeks ago and the school has not yet seen those results.
Another rule made by the National Fire Protection Association states that electrical connections made to and around water, like swimming pools and spas, must be protected by ground-fault circuit interrupter devices. These are the outlets that you generally see in most household restrooms and kitchens that will automatically shut off the electrical current if they come in contact with water. ECISD could not confirm that the outlets around the pool had these devices, but did say after this incident all outlets will be changed to protect the students.
ECISD says the last time the pool at Permian High School was updated was in 1968 so some of the outlets could very well be grandfathered in.