NEC ECC: SCC- Item 44

A hand tool by definition constitutes a tool held in the hand and operated without electricity or other power. It is powered by hand rather than a motor. Based on this definition does this render hammer drills, concrete saws and other power tools to fall under equipment rather than being covered by the WAOH fee %

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I disagree with your definition of a hand tool. For me ‘a hand tool by definition constitutes a tool held in the hand’. That means it can be powered by electricity.

Therefore, if they match my definition, they should be included in the percentage for WAOH or percentage for People OHs, which is not to say that is the right thing to do. Consequently, I personally like the changes they have made in NEC4 where both these percentages are deleted and the cost could be covered in Equipment…

There is too much ambiguity surrounding what falls within the WAOH , leaving it open for misinterpretation, is a concrete saw a hand tool or a pile breaker, a wheel barrow, therefore I agree that the changes made and incorporated into NEC 4 will lead to less disputes regarding disallowed costs.

Under NEC2 this category was ‘hand tools and hand held power tools’ although was changed under NEC3 to ‘hand tools not powered by compressed air’.

Essentially this category relates to the portability of an item. Where it requires a compressor to operate, it is, by definition, not very portable.

Equipment is defined as an item which is used to Provide the Works but not included in the works. By this definition you might argue that certain powered hand tools could be included as Equipment. As a separation, however, I would suggest that this includes items which are constantly in touch with another surface, such as a chop saw, wheelbarrow or concrete mixer. This also restricts their portability.

Note that the opening sentence of the SCC states;

‘An amount is included only in one cost component …’.

As the hand tools you mention satisfy the definition under item 44 you would not be able to include this component elsewhere under the SCC.

To further emphasise the issues with how item 44 is described you could disagree that Equipment includes a wheelbarrow - ask any operative to use a wheelbarrow without holding it in their hands? Floorplates and powerfloats would then also be covered by WAOH however this can’t be what was intended. Much clearer in NEC4 now that WAOH has been abolished.