USF maintains a full set of design Standards in 3D AutoCAD that meet all of Ontario’s regulatory requirements.
To allow for use by all Members and their diverse needs, the Standards are separated into building blocks, are purposely conservative and vague, and provide options where appropriate. This is a cost effective and operationally efficient method of achieving a comprehensive set of standards. They have a consistent design that is recognized by auditors and contractors, and given the number of organizations that give input into the development of the USF Standards, it is considered the most vetted set of Standards in Ontario.
Most Members use the USF Standards as their primary set, and have a few custom-needed Standards developed on their own, for their own use. Meanwhile, a few Members use the Standards only as a reference when producing their own set, and enjoy the networking and information sharing that comes with membership.
As a tool for material approvals and parts management, a comprehensive Material Database links the USF standards with USF and Member part numbers, industry standards, and manufacturer’s data and test reports.
USF represents the membership with legislative bodies, advocating on its behalf with the Electrical Safety Authority, Canadian Standards Association, Ontario Energy Board, etc regarding technical requirements.
USF offers a place to pool resources and ideas from across Ontario on all other technical activities, such as developing a common Client File for software tools, updating industry-wide accepted templates and formulas used by the engineering design team. Recent projects include topics such as:
- Asset Management
- Joint Use
- Non-Linear Analysis
- Industry Reference Subscriptions
USF offers its Members a schedule of technical training that suits an LDC’s engineering and operations team. It has developed its own courses in Overhead Design, Design Applications, Underground Design, and Revenue Metering. As well, USF hosts training courses offered by industry experts, i.e. Overcurrent Protection, Substation Grounding or review of the OESC, or CSA Standards.
Courses cater the new entrant looking for introductory information, through to the experienced designer looking to develop their knowledge-base.