[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Aldermen of the City of Melrose as Rev. Ords. 1976, §§ 15-1 to 15-26 (Rev. Ords. 1989, §§ 4-21 to 4-36 and 4-51 to 4-60). Amendments noted where applicable.]
Poles for the support of wires shall not be erected in the public ways or squares of the City without a petition therefor being first presented to the City Council, which petition shall be accompanied by a plan showing thereon the specific location of each pole, and without receiving written permission to do so from such Council.
State law references — Similar provisions, MGL c. 166, § 22; location of poles and conduits for transmission of electricity, MGL c. 166, §§ 21 to 29; wires and poles generally, MGL c. 166, §§ 30 to 42.
Whenever the Inspector of Wires shall receive notice of a public hearing ordered by the City Council upon a petition seeking a permit for an original location for wires, poles, piers, abutments or conduits for the transmission of electricity, he/she shall forthwith make an inspection of the proposed location and shall, prior to the date of such hearing, make a report of his/her findings with respect thereto to the City Council.
Poles must be set in the sidewalk not less than 10 inches from the outer side of the curbline and shall not be located within 10 feet of any lamppost or any other pole, except when they are designed to carry wires on streets running at right angles to each other, nor within four feet of any fire hydrant.
Where possible, all poles must be uniformly spaced, of uniform height and not more than 170 feet apart. All poles must be set not less than six feet in the ground. Poles must be stepped, commencing eight feet from the sidewalk, such steps to be parallel to the edge stone of the street. Each line of poles must be run on one side of the street only, except when it is absolutely necessary to change to the other side.
Extensions of pole tops must not be made on any pole without the approval of the Inspector of Wires, and a gain on every pole set in the streets and carrying wires must be reserved for the wires owned by the City.
All poles now standing or hereafter erected shall be kept in good condition to the satisfaction of the Inspector of Wires. They shall be stenciled, marked or branded with the owner's name or initials at a point not less than five nor more than 10 feet from the ground.
Where crossarms are designed to carry six or more wires, they must be supported with iron braces. The owner's name must be painted, stenciled or branded thereon.
Where wires of different ownership occupy the same crossarm, a tag must be fastened to the same at the insulator, on which is stamped the owner's name or initials. Such tags are to be made of unoxidizable metal and securely fastened with wire.
Pole brackets must not be used on poles carrying electric wires of any kind. Wires must be supported by crossarms. Where necessary, a single wire may be supported on pins on the tops of poles.
No person shall deface any pole by the use of linemen's spurs or by cutting with a knife, ax or any other implement.
When poles and fixtures have been abandoned by the owners thereof, they must remove them as soon as they discontinue their use, unless it is positively known that they will again use them within 60 days. Wires on such poles or fixtures owned by others must be removed unless the owners of such wires assume the ownership of such poles and fixtures, the same to be transferred to them by the original owners by authority of the City Council.
New poles must not be brought on any street more than two days in advance of the time they are to be set, and when old poles are taken down they must be removed from the street the same day.
No person shall attach any wire or line for the transmission of electricity for any purpose, except the lines and wires of the City, to any pole, except such as are provided for such purpose or such as are on his/her own premises or upon other lands with the consent of the owner thereof, or insert the same into any underground conduit except with the consent of the owner and by the order of the City Council.
[Amended 5-21-2012 by Ord. No. 2012-158]
All poles and posts used for support for streetlighting purposes shall be insulated in such a manner as to protect employees and other persons against accident, and the method of insulation must be approved by the Inspector of Wires. Guy wires must be insulated from poles and fixtures by inserting an insulator not less than six feet from the point of attachment. Guy wires must not be attached to trees on public ways without the permission of the City Engineer, and pole brackets must not be used on trees for the support of wires.
State law reference — Insulation, MGL c. 166, § 30.
[Amended 5-21-2012 by Ord. No. 2012-158]
No street railway, electric light, telephone or telegraph company shall destroy, cut or mutilate any of the trees located on any of the thoroughfares or public grounds of the City, except by written permission of the City Engineer, or allow any trees located on any of the thoroughfares or public grounds of the City to be injured through improper insulation of its wires.
Wires must not, when running in the same direction, be attached to the upper and under side of the same crossarm, and the use of so-called "hard rubber hood insulators" or "porcelain knobs" will not be permitted for high- or low-potential conductors.
The two conductors constituting the line and return of any circuit for alternating currents must be run parallel to each other and at a distance apart not less than 12 inches, except in case of service cable. When wires are brought below the roof of a building, the drops must commence at the top of the same and run straight down and between and not in front of the windows, hoistways, etc., and as near the wall as the character of the service will permit. All such drop wires designed to carry an electric light or power current must be heavily covered with the best quality of insulation, and that in turn with at least two braids of cotton, and, when they are within easy reach of persons from windows, doors, etc., they shall have an approved additional covering or tube as a further protection to the insulation. Not over five feet of so-called "weatherproof" and "underwriters" insulation will be approved for drop wires for services.
No wires shall hang less than 18 feet from the street or sidewalk at the lowest points of sag.
Transformers must not be placed on any fixture on a roof or on any wall rising above a roof. Transformers must not be attached to the outside wall of buildings so that they can be reached by persons from windows, doors, fire escapes, stairways or the ground. The primary wires must drop to the transformer at right angles to the mains or branches. They must be heavily covered with the best grade of insulation, and that in turn with at least two braids of cotton. So-called "underwriters" and "weatherproof" insulation will not be approved.
The Inspection of Wires Department shall be a subdivision of the Inspectional Services Department and shall be under the charge of the Wiring Inspector, who shall be appointed by the Mayor, subject to confirmation by the City Council, and who shall devote all of his/her time to the duties of his/her office.
The term "Inspector of Wires," wherever appearing in this and other chapters, shall include the "Wiring Inspector."
The Inspector of Wires shall have supervision of all electric and other wires erected in, upon, over or under any street or building and all poles supporting wires or lamps and streetlights. The Inspector of Wires shall also have the powers and perform the duties required of such an officer by law or by the ordinances of the City. The Inspector of Wires shall keep a detailed record of the business transacted by his/her department and shall annually, in January, submit a report thereof to the Mayor and City Council.
The Inspector of Wires will be deemed the sole judge of what constitutes safe and proper construction and insulation of all wires. If cables or conductors, poles or fixtures used for the transmission and distribution of electric current are in an unsafe and dangerous condition, he/she shall cause the current to be shut off, if the existing defects are not remedied in a reasonable time, and such defective wires, cables or conductors shall then be treated as being dead and unused and shall be removed by the Inspector of Wires at the expense of the owner thereof.
[Amended 5-18-2009 by Ord. No. 09-177]
The Fire Alarm Maintenance Lineman shall, by virtue of his/her office, be the superintendent of the fire alarm telegraph and police signal systems and of all other electric wires and wire systems now or hereafter owned by the City. The Fire Alarm Maintenance Lineman shall have the care and management of the wires, apparatus, machinery and other property connected with the systems, shall keep them in good working order at all times and shall have access to all buildings and places necessary for these purposes. The Fire Alarm Maintenance Lineman shall, at least once every 60 days, inspect and test, or cause to be inspected and tested under his/her direction, each fire alarm telegraph box in the City. All additions to such systems and all new electric wires and appliances required by the City for its use shall be erected under his/her supervision and to his/her satisfaction.
The Fire Alarm Maintenance Lineman shall, at least once every 60 days, report to the Chief of the Fire Department the results of his/her inspections and tests of fire alarm telegraph boxes made within the period of 60 days next preceding the date of his/her report.
The Inspector of Wires may appoint and remove such assistants as may be necessary for the work to be done so far as permitted by appropriation.
All electric work shall be installed in accordance with the rules of the American Insurance Association, the ordinances and regulations of the City and the rules established by the Inspector of Wires.
State law reference — Authorizing board of fire prevention regulations to make rules relative to electric wiring, MGL c. 143, § 3L.
Rules shall be established by the Inspector of Wires regulating the time of notification of work to be done, the requirements or conditions for turning on the electric current and such other matters as he/she may deem advisable.
Any person installing or maintaining electric or other wires shall, upon request of the Inspector of Wires, furnish him/her with such information as may be necessary to the faithful and effectual discharge of his/her duties under this chapter.
Every person proposing to place wires designed to carry a current of electricity within a building shall give notice thereof to the Inspector of Wires before commencing the work and shall not turn on the current to wires that are to be used for electric lighting, heating or power until written permission to do so has been given by the Inspector of Wires.
State law reference — Notice to wiring inspector required, MGL c. 143, § 3L.