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RULE §554.361Electrical Requirements for New Facilities

(a) The design of the electrical systems must be done by or under the direction of a licensed professional electrical engineer approved by the Texas Board of Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors to operate in Texas, and the parts of the plans and specifications covering electrical design must bear the legible seal of the engineer.

  (1) Utilities; heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning systems; vertical conveyors; and chutes must meet the requirements of NFPA 101, Chapter 9, Building Service and Fire Protection Equipment.

  (2) Fire protection systems, including fire alarms, must meet the requirements of §554.357 of this division (relating to Fire Protection Systems for New Facilities).

  (3) Lighting and outlets at resident bedrooms must meet the requirements of §554.354 of this division (relating to Architectural Space Planning and Utilization for New Facilities).

(b) Electrical systems.

  (1) Electrical systems must meet the installation requirements of NFPA 70.

  (2) Electrical systems must meet the performance requirements of NFPA 99.

  (3) Branch circuits serving resident bedrooms must meet the requirements of NFPA 99.

  (4) Essential Electrical System (EES).

    (A) To provide electricity during an interruption of the normal electric supply, an emergency source of electricity must be provided and connected to certain circuits for lighting and power. All facilities covered by this section must comply with the EES requirements for new health care facilities in NFPA 99, based on the risk category determined by the assessment required by §554.300(i) of this subchapter (relating to General Requirements).

      (i) If the determined risk category is Category 2, as defined in NFPA 99, the EES must meet the requirements for a Type II EES according to NFPA 99.

      (ii) If the determined risk category is Category 1, as defined in NFPA 99, the EES must meet the requirements for a Type I EES according to NFPA 99.

      (iii) A Type I EES serving a portion of a facility categorized as Category 1 risk is permitted to also serve a portion of the same facility categorized as Category 2 risk.

      (iv) Distribution requirements for Type I or Type II EES must be according to NFPA 99.

    (B) In addition to systems and devices required for the type of EES installed, the following systems and devices must be connected to the appropriate branches of the EES, according to NFPA 99:

      (i) illumination for the following areas:

        (I) means of egress, including areas immediately outside of exit doors;

        (II) nurses' stations;

        (III) medication rooms;

        (IV) dining, living, and recreation rooms, including activity rooms;

        (V) bathing rooms not directly connected to resident bedrooms;

      (ii) exit signs and exit directional signs as required by NFPA 101;

      (iii) alarm systems, including fire alarms and alarms required for nonflammable medical gas systems, if installed;

      (iv) task illumination and selected receptacles at the generator set location;

      (v) selected duplex receptacles including receptacles in such areas in resident corridors, at each resident bed location, in nurses' stations, and in medication rooms, including biologicals refrigerator;

      (vi) nurse call systems;

      (vii) resident room night lights;

      (viii) a light and receptacle in an electrical room or a boiler room;

      (ix) elevator cab lighting, control, and communication systems;

      (x) all facility telephone equipment;

      (xi) paging or speaker systems, if intended for communication during an emergency. Radio transceivers installed for emergency use must be capable of operating for at least one hour upon total failure of both normal and emergency power.

      (xii) Heating Equipment to Provide Heating for Resident Bedrooms. A facility must provide heating in resident bedrooms during disruption of the normal power source unless one of the following conditions applies:

        (I) The outside design temperature is higher than 20 degrees Fahrenheit (-6.7 degrees Celsius);

        (II) The outside design temperature is lower than 20 degrees Fahrenheit (-6.7 degrees Celsius) and, when selected rooms are provided for the needs of all residents, then only such rooms need be heated.

        (III) The facility is served by a dual source of normal power.

      (xiii) A facility must provide throw-over facilities to allow the temporary operation of any elevator for the release of passengers in instances when an interruption of power would result in elevators stopping between floors.

    (C) The emergency lighting must be automatically in operation within ten seconds after the interruption of the normal power supply. Emergency egress lighting must not be switched.

    (D) Receptacles and switches connected to emergency power must have red faceplates.

    (E) The design and installation of emergency motor generators must be according to NFPA 37, NFPA 99, and NFPA 110.

      (i) Nursing facilities and contiguous or same-site facilities, such as hospitals and assisted living facilities, may be served by the same generating equipment so long as the integrity of the individual facilities' emergency or back-up power systems is not compromised. This permission applies only to the generating equipment and not to automatic or manual transfer switches or to distribution systems.

      (ii) Generators must be located a minimum of three feet from a combustible exterior building finish and a minimum of five feet from a building opening, if located on the exterior of the building.

      (iii) A facility must provide a noncombustible protective cover or the protection recommended by the manufacturer when a generator is located on the exterior of the building.

      (iv) Stored fuel capacity must be sufficient for not less than four hours of required generator operation.

      (v) Motor generators fueled by public utility natural gas must have the capability to be switched to an alternate fuel source according to NFPA 70.

    (F) The wiring circuits for the EES must be kept entirely independent of all other wiring and must not enter the same race-ways, boxes, or cabinets according to NFPA 70.

    (G) A facility must meet the requirements for the administration of the EES, including maintenance and testing of the EES, according to the requirements of NFPA 99 for the type of EES installed, and the requirements of §554.326(d) of this subchapter (relating to Safety Operations).

  (5) General Lighting Requirements. General lighting requirements are as follows:

    (A) All spaces occupied by people, machinery, equipment, approaches to buildings, and parking lots must have lighting.

    (B) All quality, intensity, and type of lighting must be adequate and appropriate to the space and all functions within the space.

    (C) Minimum lighting levels can be found in the Illuminating Engineering Society Lighting Handbook, latest edition, but must not be lower than the following.

      (i) Minimum illumination must be 20 footcandles in resident rooms, corridors, nurses' stations, dining rooms, lobbies, toilets, bathing facilities, laundries, stairways, and elevators. Illumination requirements for these areas apply to lighting throughout the space and are measured at approximately 30 inches above the floor anywhere in the room.

      (ii) Minimum illumination for over-bed reading lamps, medication-preparation or storage area, kitchens, and nurses' station desks must be 50 footcandles. Illumination requirements for these areas apply to the task performed and are measured on the task.

    (D) A facility must provide general illumination, with provisions for reduction of light levels at night, in a nursing unit corridor.

    (E) A facility must provide a basket wire guard or other suitable shield to prevent breakage or contact between combustible materials and exposed incandescent light bulbs, or other high-heat generating lamps, in closets or other similar spaces.

    (F) Exposed incandescent or fluorescent bulbs are not permitted in food service or other areas where glass fragments from breakage may get into food, medications, linens, or utensils. A facility must protect all fluorescent bulbs with a shield or catcher to prevent bulb drop-out.

  (6) Receptacles or convenience outlets.

    (A) Receptacles in bedrooms must meet the requirements in §554.354(a)(6) of this division (relating to Architectural Space Planning and Utilization for New Facilities).

    (B) Duplex receptacles for general use must be installed in corridors spaced not more than 50 feet apart and within 25 feet of ends of corridors. A facility must provide at least one duplex receptacle with emergency electrical service in each resident corridor.

    (C) Receptacles must be provided with emergency electrical service for essential needs such as medication refrigerators and systems or equipment whose failure is likely to result in major injury or death to a resident.

    (D) Receptacles in the remainder of the building must be sufficient to serve the present and future needs of residents and equipment.

    (E) Location of receptacles, horizontally and vertically, should be carefully planned and coordinated with the expected designed use of furnishings and equipment to maximize their accessibility and to minimize conditions such as beds or furniture being jammed against plugs used in the outlets.

    (F) Exterior receptacles must be an approved waterproof type.

    (G) A facility must provide ground fault interruption protection at appropriate locations such as at whirlpools and other wet areas according to the NFPA 70.

(c) Nurse call systems.

  (1) A nurse call system consists of power units, annunciator control units, corridor dome stations, emergency call stations, bedside call stations, and activating devices. The units must be compatible and laboratory listed by a nationally recognized testing laboratory for the system and use intended.

  (2) Each resident bedroom must be served by at least one call station and each bed must be provided with a call switch. Two call switches serving adjacent beds may be served by one call station. Each call entered into the system must activate a corridor dome light above the bedroom, bathroom, or toilet room corridor door, a visual signal at the nurses' station which indicates the room from which the call was placed, and a continuous or intermittent continuous audible signal of sufficient amplitude to be clearly heard by nursing staff. The amplitude or pitch of the audible signal must not be such that it is irritating to residents or visitors. The system must be designed so that calls entered into the system may be canceled only at the call station. Intercom-type systems which meet this requirement are acceptable.

  (3) A nurse call system that provides two-way voice communication must be equipped with an indicating light at each call station which lights and remains lighted as long as the voice circuit is operating.

  (4) A nurse call emergency switch must be provided for resident use at each resident's toilet, bath, and shower. These switches must be usable by residents using the fixtures and by a collapsed resident lying on the floor.

  (5) A nurse call system must meet UL 1069 for the core system of power units, annunciator control units, corridor dome lights, emergency call stations, bedside call stations, and activating devices; and

  (6) An ancillary or supplemental device, including a pocket pager or other portable device, is not required to meet UL 1069.

Source Note: The provisions of this §554.361 adopted to be effective March 22, 2018, 43 TexReg 1646; transferred effective January 15, 2021, as published in the Texas Register December 11, 2020, 45 TexReg 8871; amended to be effective January 2, 2022, 46 TexReg 9037

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