2023 National Electrical Safety Code NESC

New code goes into effect 1 February 2023, but will be available to access on 1 August 2022

Produced exclusively by IEEE, the National Electrical Safety Code (NESC) specifies best practices for the safety of electric supply and communication utility systems at both public and private utilities. The NESC sets the ground rules for practical safeguarding of persons during the installation, operation, or maintenance of power, telephone, cable TV, and railroad signal systems. The NESC is revised approximately every five years to keep the code up to date and viable.

The NESC, Handbook, and Course Program are available through institutional subscriptions.

The NESC covers basic provisions for safeguarding of persons from hazards arising from the installation, operation, or maintenance of conductors and equipment. It also includes work rules for the construction, maintenance, and operation of electric supply and communication lines and equipment. The standard is applicable to the systems and equipment operated by utilities, or similar systems and equipment, of an industrial establishment or complex under the control of qualified persons.

The NESC Handbook represents a next-generation tool for the professional who needs to understand the NESC. The handbook was developed for use at many levels in the electric and communication industries, including those involved in system design, construction, maintenance, inspection, standards development, and worker training. This step-by-step guide explains how to apply and meet the NESC rules for electrical supply stations and equipment, as well as overhead and underground electric supply and communications lines. It gives users insight into what lies behind the NESC’s rules and how to apply them.

The NESC Course Program is a series of seven online courses that take an in-depth look at the rules, regulations, and changes made in the 2023 NESC edition. Taught by industry leaders who helped write the standard, these courses provide essential training for safeguarding power utility facilities and the people around them. Available exclusively through the IEEE Xplore digital library and the IEEE Learning Network, courses are self-paced and delivered in a convenient, easy-to-use online learning environment.

The NESC Code has been continually adapted to reflect innovations in technology and new challenges confronted in the field.

Major updates to the 2023 Edition include:

  • Rules 190-195: New rules for Photovoltaic (PV) generating stations.
  • Rule 116c: Adds EXCEPTION for providing short-circuit protection if < 1000 V and short lengths of insulated power cables.
  • Rule 320B: Revised to clarify separations apply to communications and supply in different conduit systems.
  • Table 410-4: Adds new Table based on latest Arc-Flash testing on live-front transformers.
  • Rule 092A: Exception added allowing protection, control, safety battery systems to not be grounded.
  • Rules 224 B1, C1, D1: Revised to to better present horizontal wind clearances, and coordinate requirements with new Table 234-7. 
  • Rule 120A: Revised, now provides correction factors for clearances on higher elevations.
  • Table 253-1: Revised to reduce Load Factor for fiber-reinforced polymer components under wire tension, including dead ends, for Grade C construction.
  • Rule 410A: Revised to require a specific radio-frequency safety program for exposed employees.
Icon: Laptop computer

Features and Benefits

  • Access for all users in your organization through the IEEE Xplore digital library 
  • Cost savings by providing access to multiple users through one subscription
  • Access to prior versions of the NESC and Handbook
    • A subscription includes: National Electrical Safety Code 2023, 2017, 2012, 2007, and 2002, as well as Preprints. Documents delivered in PDF via the IEEE Xplore digital library
  • Access to redline version of code
  • Convenient authentication options through the IEEE Xplore Digital Library and robust search tools with a user-friendly interface
Icon: Mouse cursor with checkmark

How to Subscribe

The 2023 NESC is available as an add-on to an existing subscription or as a stand-alone annual subscription via IEEE Xplore.

Choose the subscription option that best meets your needs:

  1. NESC Code annual subscription
  2. NESC Code + Handbook (best option)

The IEEE Xplore publication date will be 1 August 2022.

Contact Us for More Information

Request a Custom Quote

* The NESC Course Program is sold separately. Your IEEE representative can provide a custom quote for available courses.