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Electrical Shop

facilities services

Fire Alarms

Every building at Boston College has some form of fire protection. These systems vary from battery-powered smoke detectors to fully addressable systems that are monitored by the Boston College Police Department.

Most academic buildings and residence halls and some houses have master fire alarm boxes outside or inside their main entrances. These boxes communicate with the City of Newton (52 boxes) or the City of Boston (14 boxes) when an alarm of fire occurs. These systems are tested quarterly as required by State Law.

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At Boston College we have 74 elevators in academic buildings and residence halls, as well as four dumbwaiters and five wheelchair lifts. All elevators are checked and maintained on a weekly Preventive Maintenance Program.

All elevators, wheelchair lifts, and dumbwaiters are inspected and tested once a year by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Department of Public Safety for general safety, fire service, and emergency power operations.

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Emergency Call Boxes

Boston College has over one hundred emergency call boxes throughout both BC campuses, including the two parking garages.

Each call box is connected to the BC Police Department by computer via RCU units and have battery back-up power. The call boxes are inspected by the BCPD, and service requests are managed through the Work Order Center.

Emergency call boxes are identifyable by a blue light above the emergency activator.

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Emergency Power

Each academic building and residence hall has emergency back-up power for egress. Some have emergency batteries; others have emergency generators. Emergency generators are tested on a monthly basis for an hour of run time in compliance with local and state requirements. There are 38 emergency generators on campus, six fueled by natural gas and 32 by diesel fuel.

Battery backup-powered lights are installed in houses and in smaller residence halls and are checked and tested through the Preventive Maintenance Program.

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The Electrical Appliance Shop at Boston College provides an essential service to the campus community by installing and repairing:

  • Refrigerators: Including the replacement of the light bulb
  • Dishwashers: We provide service, but no detergent
  • Electric ranges: Including replacement of the grease collector
  • Range hoods: Including the replacement of the filter and light bulb
  • Window air conditioners: Including the replacement of the filter
  • Window heat pumps: Including the replacement of the filter
  • Garbage disposals: In conjunction with the Plumbing Shop

Note: All filter replacement is done through the Preventive Management Program.

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Security Systems

The Electric Shop installs and maintains various type of security alarm systems. These vary from whole-building alarms to a single-door alarm. Each of these systems has battery backup in case of a power outage. Each alarm is connected to the BC Police Department via a central computer system. The electric shop works hand in hand with BCPD to custom design a security system for any given area. Security codes to each system are changed on an as-needed basis and keyed into a secure database. If your department has any security concerns, please contact the Boston College Police Department.

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Card Access

The Electrical Shop maintains and repairs all exterior door card access issues in the residence halls. There are approximately 157 doors monitored and managed in the card access system. Each card reader is programmed through a building controller and reports who gained access and the status of the door (open or closed) back to the BC Police Department. The door will go into alarm if left open for a prolonged period. BCPD responds to alarms and will report any mechanical or electrical door problem to the Work Order Center.

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Indoor and Outdoor Lighting and Power

NStar supplies Boston College with three dedicated 13,800-volt power lines directly into our substation.

There are over 2,700 outside security fixtures on a Preventive Maintenance Program checked on a monthly basis by the Second Shift Electrician for any safety issues, including roof lights and walkway lights.

All public-area indoor lighting service for academic buildings and residence halls is performed on a Weekly Program. Service for individual offices and rooms must be requested through the Work Order Center at x2-3048.

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Lightning Protection

All academic buildings, residence halls, and houses at Boston College have lightning protection. Lightning ground rods are located on the rooftops of every structure. We have installed lightning arrestors at all electrical high-voltage and low-voltage services, as well as all the telephone, cable TV, and computer lines that enter our buildings. Lightning arrestors minimize damage from lightning strikes.

All systems are checked and maintained on a biannual basis on a Preventive Maintenance Program to achieve minimal ohm (resistance) readings.

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Please visit the Work Order Center to place an electronic service request, or call x2-3048.