It's a common practice in our plant to store electrical spare parts in the bottom of control cabinet enclosures. They're not in the way and don't interfere with troubleshooting the cabinet. I've been told that this practice is a violation of NEC, but I can't find it anywhere in NEC or in NFPA 79. Or on Mike Holt's site (I'm not a member there). Is this a code violation? If so, what section?
All electrical standards have the general purpose of protecting user from bringing conducting objects into contact with live electrical parts, peppered throughout them. Which includes storage of spare parts (non-essential/used) in or around electrical panels. Standards cover a lot of things one would think is common sense like that, for example guarding from keeping water away from /out of electrical panel too.
NEC® 110.26(B) and 110.34(A)
110.26(3)(B) says that "Working space required by this section shall not be used for storage".
29 CFR, Part 1910, contains the clear working space requirements contained in Sections 110.26(A) and 110.32 of the NEC...