Ooops, knocked loose a breaker from the bus bar, what next?

If an inspector accidentally knocks loose a breaker from the main bus bar, what would you recommend they do? Reach into the panel and push it back into place?

I would turn it off and push it back into place…

This is the reason I never open a federal Pacific “stab-lok” panel.

A Federal Pacific Electric “Stab-Lok” service panel is in use. These panels and breakers are a latent hazard and can fail to trip in response to over current, leading to electrical fires. The breakers may also fail to shut off internally even if the toggle is switched to “off.” Some double-pole (240-Volt) FPE circuit breakers and single-pole FPE Stab-Lok circuit breakers simply do not work safely. There are other panel-defects independent of the breaker problems, panel and panel-bus fires and arcing failures in some equipment. The failure rates for these circuit breakers were and still are significant. In some cases failure to trip occurs 60% of the time - a serious fire and electrical shock hazard. Failures are documented in the CPSC study and by independent research. **Have a licensed electrician make further evaluation and corrections as needed. **

I would turn off the main , take a picture note it, recommend a electrician review panel. and put it back in , But i would leave it off with a tag. and note to home owner.

Just to make things clear about the Stab-lok comment. You should still put in your reports to have the “Certified Electrician” make the descision whether it is safe or not.

Each situation should be judged independently, but I will usually reinstall the breaker myself.

Agreed…truly depends on the comfort level of the inspector doing the inspection.

Which depends on the gloves he’s wearing!
I’m updating InterNACHI’s safety course, so I have to assume lowest common denominator in what I write.

Everyone should have a pair of Klein Electrical Protection Gloves.

Would it no be reasonable that the cover not be removed unless the person has the knowledge, ability and confidence to reinstall the breaker?

Nice gloves Dale…

And yes, I would judge the situation and go from there. In my case, most breakers would be replaced, if I knocked them loose and it was safe IMO to replace them.

I have a friend that was very knowledgeable and worked on high voltage. He lost both his arms from an electrical panel explosion; That makes no bearing on a person’s confidence, some of the most foolish deaths are from the result of misinformed knowledge of safety by regular individuals.
I watched in surprise as a Seasoned Electrician re-installed a breaker falling out that was already arcing on the buss with no gloves, no glasses and no rubber soled shoes. The Real Estate Agent just looked in amazement.

I couldn’t find a voltage rating on those gloves. Do they have one?