TDLR Arc Flash Newsletter - May 2022

Arc Flash

May 2022 / Issue #24 

Welcome to the TDLR Arc Flash!

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Our newsletter is intended to keep city officials, electricians, and consumers throughout Texas informed of the Texas Electrical Safety and Licensing Act and TDLR’s efforts to enforce the associated requirements. 

Please feel free to PASS IT ON!

To subscribe to email news and updates about the Electrician program, or to review your email subscription settings, visit the TLDR Email Updates page. 

Curtail Unlicensed Activity In Your Area: Help TDLR Set Up A License Sweep In Your Area


TDLR staff does periodic "licensing sweeps" that are intended to curtail unlicensed activity in various areas around the state. These sweeps help TDLR establish a presence in the community and allow us to verify that electrical work is being performed by licensed electricians in accordance with state law and rules. They also help us educate the public on the state electrical licensing requirements. 

If you would like to help TDLR staff coordinate a license sweep in your area, please email Jerry Daniel or call him at 512-799-1489.

Yes, All Electricians Must Abide By State Requirements

the more you know

We continue to hear concerns from members of the Texas electrical industry that some electrical contractors, as well as some electricians, may not be abiding by state requirements.

Remember, all electricians must:

  • display their contractor # and company name on both sides of all vehicles used in conducting electrical work and to include TDLR contact information on all of their invoices and proposals as well as their TECL number.
  • hold the appropriate TECL license to “perform or offer to perform electrical work.” 
  • list all electrical equipment per Article 110.3(B) of the NEC unless the local authority that has jurisdiction has amendments that would supersede these requirements.
  • have a current license to offer to perform or perform electrical work. An expired license is the same as being unlicensed.
  • have a Master Electrician attached to a TECL. If no Master Electrician is attached to the license, you cannot offer to perform or perform electrical work until a valid Master Electrician is attached to the TECL.

Reminder: All Electrical Work Must Be Performed By Licensed Electricians, Even Outside City Limits

All non-exempt electrical work must be performed by licensed electricians working through licensed electrical contractors – even if the work is outside of city limits. Administrative Rule 73.70(a) 

electrical safety board meeting

Electrical Safety And Advisory Board Meets May 25, 2022: Join Us Online

The Electrical Safety and Licensing Advisory Board will meet at 1 p.m. on Wednesday, May 25. The agenda will be posted online when it is complete. All past meetings are available on TDLR's YouTube page and you can find agendas, staff reports, meeting minutes on the advisory board's web page.

May Is Electrical Safety Month

arc the armadillo never above a pool

May is Electrical Safety Month and includes both Memorial Day and the beginning of summer, which normally means a lot of summer fun in our favorite bodies of water such as pools, lakes and beaches. Electrical safety is of the utmost importance when there is a body of water within twenty feet of any electrical wiring or equipment.

Always put safety first and look at the requirements in the 2017 NEC, article 553, 555, 680 and 682, depending on the area, then apply the special requirements required for that type of body of water for safety first.

Owners should have a licensed electrical contractor with licensed electricians trained in that area of electrical safety perform an inspection, and complete any electrical work required in the 2020 NEC for electrical safety around that body of water.

New pool electrical installation must be done by a licensed electrical contractor with licensed electricians, and pool electrical maintenance must be done by a licensed electrical contractor with licensed electricians or a residential appliance installer. Electrical contractors, electricians, and residential appliance installers should not do any of this type of electrical work until they have had the proper training in the area of that type of body of water.

With summer here, let’s have fun, but always stay safe when it comes to electrical safety and water. 

Additional Key Pool Safety Points To Consider

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  • Prior to using an outdoor receptacle, check to make sure the receptacle is protected with a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) and that the GFCI is working properly. You can do this by pushing the test button on the receptacle or on the overcurrent device (breaker) inside the electrical panel.  If it is not performing properly, TDLR recommends calling a Texas Licensed Electrical Contractor for services needed.
  • Any electrical wiring that is within 20 feet of a swimming pool shall have protection from a ground fault circuit interrupter. THIS INCLUDES UNDERWATER LUMINAIRES (POOL LIGHTS)!
  • Make sure overhead electrical lines do not pass over the pool. In fact, it’s best to keep your pool at least 25 feet away from power lines in all directions.
  • Allow at least 18 feet of clearance between overhead power lines and a diving board, deck, platform, slide, or observation area. Never build an in-ground pool or set up an above ground pool over underground electric cables.
  • Pools and pool decking should be installed at least 5 feet away from all underground utility lines.
  • Except for specially designed lighting fixtures, don’t put electrical fixtures or receptacles within 5 feet of a pool.
  • Be sure to comply with any local building codes that may provide more stringent guidelines than the ones that have been listed.

But Wait: There's More Electrical Safety Info To Think About

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  • Visit the TDLR web site at to find out if an electrician is licensed to perform electrical work. The license is granted to professionals who have demonstrated the required amount of electrical work experience, successfully completed the Department approved examination and met all other state electrical laws and rules.
  • Contact a licensed electrical contractor and having their licensed electricians check your home’s electrical wiring/distribution system to reduce the likelihood of electrocution and fires.
  • Leave the electrical work to the professionals. Do not attempt to fix suspected wiring problems yourself. Electrical shocks – even mild ones – are an indication of an electrical hazard.  Shut off the circuit and have the electrical system checked by a licensed electrician.
  • Look at the Texas Electrical Contractor License (TECL), or the Residential Appliance Installer Contractor License (TICL), plus the appropriate license(s) that the persons performing the work must have when you have electrical work performed on your residence and/or pool. Make copies.
  • File a complaint online with TDLR on any person offering to perform or performing electrical services without a license -- that will help us make Texas a safer place for everyone.

Did You Know? You Should Never Swim Near A Boat Dock

no swimming near boat dock sign

Did you know that it's possible to be electrocuted if you're swimming near a boat dock? Electrical currents can be present in the water in marinas and near boat docks, and those currents can be harmful or even lethal.

This is a preventable tragedy. Don't swim near boat docks and don't allow others to do it either!

Watch this video to learn more.

Fun Electrical Educational Information Available For The Kids

arc the armadillo coloring page

Electrical safety education for a child is important…teach them early!

Arc The Electric Safety Armadillo has created some special TDLR coloring sheets with specific safety messages related to some of the topics covered in this edition of the Arc Flash. We'd love to see the finished versions!

You can also download  additional electrical safety information and fun activities for the little ones from the National Fire Prevention Association.

arc the armadillo call before you dig

Call 8-1-1 Before You Dig. Every. Time.

Arc the Texas Electric Safety Armadillo reminds us that everyone who isn't an armadillo should always take precautions and “call 8-1-1 before you dig.”

Remember that power lines are underground as well.

Help protect against personal injury, including loss of life, costly property damage, expensive repairs and legal and civil penalties, by contacting Texas 8-1-1 as an excavator.

Be safe out there, y'all!

You Have Questions? We Have Answers

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Closing the Circuit

If you have any questions, concerns, comments, or observations about the TDLR Electricians Program, please contact us – we want to hear from you. 


Many fatal electrical shocks happen to people who should know better -

think twice and don’t take chances.

Please be safe out there.