Article 525

Carnivals, Circuses, Fairs, and Similar Events

Part I. General Requirements

  1. Scope. This article covers the installation of portable wiring and equipment for carnivals, circuses, fairs, and similar functions, including wiring in or on all structures.
  2. Definitions.Operator. The individual responsible for starting, stopping, and controlling an amusement ride or supervising a conces‐ sion.Portable Structures. Units designed to be moved including, but not limited to, amusement rides, attractions, concessions, tents, trailers, trucks, and similar units.
  3. Other Articles.
  1. Portable Wiring and Equipment. Wherever the require‐ ments of other articles of this Code and Article 525 differ, the requirements of Article 525 shall apply to the portable wiring and equipment.
  2. Permanent Structures. Articles 518 and 520 shall apply to wiring in permanent structures.
  3. Audio Signal Processing, Amplification, and Reproduction Equipment. Article 640 shall apply to the wiring and installa‐ tion of audio signal processing, amplification, and reproduc‐ tion equipment.
  4. Attractions Utilizing Pools, Fountains, and Similar Installa‐ tions with Contained Volumes of Water. This equipment shall be installed to comply with the applicable requirements of Arti‐ cle 680.
  1. Overhead Conductor Clearances.
    1. Vertical Clearances. Conductors shall have a vertical clear‐ ance to ground in accordance with 225.18. These clearances shall apply only to wiring installed outside of tents and conces‐ sions.
    2. Clearance to Portable Structures.
      1. 600 Volts (or Less). Portable structures shall be main‐ tained not less than 4.5 m (15 ft) in any direction from over‐ head conductors operating at 600 volts or less, except for the conductors supplying the portable structure. Portable struc‐ tures included in 525.3(D) shall comply with Table 680.9(A).
      2. Over 600 Volts. Portable structures shall not be located under or within a space that is located 4.5 m (15 ft) horizon‐ tally and extending vertically to grade of conductors operating in excess of 600 volts.
  2. Protection of Electrical Equipment. Electrical equip‐ ment and wiring methods in or on portable structures shall be provided with mechanical protection where such equipment or wiring methods are subject to physical damage.


Part II. Power Sources

  1. Services. Services shall comply with 525.10(A) and (B).
    1. Guarding. Service equipment shall not be installed in a location that is accessible to unqualified persons, unless the equipment is lockable.
    2. Mounting and Location. Service equipment shall be securely fastened to a solid backing and be installed so as to be protected from the weather, unless of weatherproof construc‐ tion.
  2. Multiple Sources of Supply. Where multiple services or separately derived systems, or both, supply portable struc‐ tures, the equipment grounding conductors of all the sources of supply that serve such structures separated by less than 3.7 m (12 ft) shall be bonded together at the portable structures. The bonding conductor shall be copper and sized in accordance with Table 250.122 based on the largest overcurrent device supplying the portable structures, but not smaller than 6 AWG.

Part III. Wiring Methods

  1. Wiring Methods.
    1. Type. Where flexible cords or cables are used, they shall be listed for extra-hard usage. Where flexible cords or cables are used and are not subject to physical damage, they shall be permitted to be listed for hard usage. Where used outdoors, flexible cords and cables shall also be listed for wet locations and shall be sunlight resistant. Extra-hard usage flexible cords or cables shall be permitted for use as permanent wiring on portable amusement rides and attractions where not subject to physical damage.
    2. Single-Conductor. Single-conductor cable shall be permit‐ ted only in sizes 2 AWG or larger.
    3. Open Conductors. Open conductors shall be prohibited except as part of a listed assembly or festoon lighting installed in accordance with Article 225.
    4. Splices. Flexible cords or cables shall be continuous with‐ out splice or tap between boxes or fittings.
    5. Cord Connectors. Cord connectors shall not be laid on the ground unless listed for wet locations. Connectors and cable connections shall not be placed in audience traffic paths or within areas accessible to the public unless guarded.
    6. Support. Wiring for an amusement ride, attraction, tent, or similar structure shall not be supported by any other ride or structure unless specifically designed for the purpose.
    7. Protection. Flexible cords or cables accessible to the public shall be arranged to minimize the tripping hazard and shall be permitted to be covered with nonconductive matting, provided that the matting does not constitute a greater trip‐ ping hazard than the uncovered cables. It shall be permitted to bury cables. The requirements of 300.5 shall not apply.
    8. Boxes and Fittings. A box or fitting shall be installed at each connection point, outlet, switchpoint, or junction point.
  2. Rides, Tents, and Concessions.
    1. Disconnecting Means. A means to disconnect each porta‐ ble structure from all ungrounded conductors shall be provi‐ded. The disconnecting means shall be located within sight of and within 1.8 m (6 ft) of the operator’s station. The discon‐ necting means shall be readily accessible to the operator, including when the ride is in operation. Where accessible to unqualified persons, the disconnecting means shall be locka‐ ble. A shunt trip device that opens the fused disconnect or circuit breaker when a switch located in the ride operator’s console is closed shall be a permissible method of opening the circuit.
    2. Portable Wiring Inside Tents and Concessions. Electrical wiring for lighting, where installed inside of tents and conces‐ sions, shall be securely installed and, where subject to physical damage, shall be provided with mechanical protection. All lamps for general illumination shall be protected from acciden‐ tal breakage by a suitable luminaire or lampholder with a guard.
  3. Portable Distribution or Termination Boxes. Portable distribution or termination boxes shall comply with 525.22(A) through (D).
    1. Construction. Boxes shall be designed so that no live parts are exposed except when necessary for examination, adjustment, servicing, or maintenance by qualified persons. Where installed outdoors, the box shall be of weatherproof construction and mounted so that the bottom of the enclosure is not less than 150 mm (6 in.) above the ground.
    2. Busbars and Terminals. Busbars shall have an ampere rating not less than the overcurrent device supplying the feeder supplying the box. Where conductors terminate directly on busbars, busbar connectors shall be provided.
    3. Receptacles and Overcurrent Protection. Receptacles shall have overcurrent protection installed within the box. The overcurrent protection shall not exceed the ampere rating of the receptacle, except as permitted in Article 430 for motor loads.
    4. Single-Pole Connectors. Where single-pole connectors are used, they shall comply with 530.22.
  4. Ground-Fault Circuit-Interrupter (GFCI) Protection.
  1. Where GFCI Protection Is Required. GFCI protection for personnel shall be provided for the following:
    1. All 125-volt, single-phase, 15- and 20-ampere non-locking- type receptacles used for disassembly and reassembly or readily accessible to the general public
    2. Equipment that is readily accessible to the general public and supplied from a 125-volt, single-phase, 15- or 20-ampere branch circuit
    The GFCI shall be permitted to be an integral part of the attachment plug or located in the power-supply cord within 300 mm (12 in.) of the attachment plug. Listed cord sets incor‐ porating GFCI for personnel shall be permitted.
  2. Where GFCI Protection Is Not Required. Receptacles that are not accessible from grade level and that only facilitate quick disconnecting and reconnecting of electrical equipment shall not be required to be provided with GFCI protection. These receptacles shall be of the locking type.
  3. Where GFCI Protection Is Not Permitted. Egress lighting shall not be protected by a GFCI.
  4. Receptacles Supplied by Portable Cords. Where GFCI protection is provided through the use of GFCI receptacles, and the branch circuits supplying receptacles utilize flexible cord, the GFCI protection shall be listed, labeled, and identi‐ fied for portable use.

Part IV. Grounding and Bonding

  1. Equipment Bonding. The following equipment connected to the same source shall be bonded:
    1. Metal raceways and metal-sheathed cable
    2. Metal enclosures of electrical equipment
    3. Metal frames and metal parts of portable structures, trail‐ ers, trucks, or other equipment that contain or support electrical equipment
    The equipment grounding conductor of the circuit supply‐ ing the equipment in items (1), (2) or (3) that is likely to ener‐ gize the metal frame or part shall be permitted to serve as the bonding means.
  2. Equipment Grounding. All equipment to be grounded shall be connected to an equipment grounding conductor of a type recognized by 250.118 and installed in accordance with Parts VI and VII of Article 250. The equipment grounding conductor shall be connected to the system grounded conduc‐ tor at the service disconnecting means or, in the case of a sepa‐ rately derived system such as a generator, at the generator or first disconnecting means supplied by the generator. The grounded circuit conductor shall not be connected to the equipment grounding conductor on the load side of the serv‐ ice disconnecting means or on the load side of a separately derived system disconnecting means.
  3. Equipment Grounding Conductor Continuity Assur‐ ance. The continuity of the equipment grounding conductors shall be verified each time that portable electrical equipment is connected.