5 things to help ensure safe electrical installation and testing

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Safe electrical inspection and testing in the workplace is about more than just ensuring businesses meet the regulated standards for electrical safety. It is also about ensuring personal safety. Here are five key things to know:

1. Understand the regulations:

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Safe electrical inspection is regulated by law, meaning it is fundamental for companies to abide by the national standard for electrical installation (BS 7671). This standard falls under the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989, which require those in control of all or part of an electrical system to ensure it is safe to use and maintained in a safe condition. The risks to companies who fail to abide by the regulations are serious, including heavy fines and even potential jail time if a serious accident occurs.

2. Safety starts with visuals:

Safe inspection and testing starts with awareness of visible signs of a potential electrical issue.  A commonly overlooked issue is mislabelled circuit panels, meaning it is even more important to conduct a thorough visual inspection from the very beginning. Other visible signs, like a cracked switch, chafed wires, loose components or signs of overheating should also be taken into account, along with unusual sounds or smells.

3. Remember SOLO:

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Working in safe isolation is key to electrical safety, and the regulations are such that working in a ‘live’ environment is an absolute last resort. The act of ‘switch off and lock off’ or SOLO simply means making certain the circuit is dead. Before any work is undertaken on an appliance or panel, you must be able to switch the electrical circuit off. 

4. Expect perfection:

It is no surprise that perfectionism is crucial for electrical work, given the potential safety risks involved, and it is why electrical inspection and testing training is so important. The BS 7671 City and Guilds award pass rate is only 33% in England and Wales, with even small mistakes in the training exams resulting in a fail. But it is this incredibly high standard that means holders of this award have more credibility over those who do not.

5. Choose the right training provider:

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Choosing the right training provider is important to ensure these standards can be achieved. EEF offers a range of in-depth training solutions, delivered by experienced trainers, to help electricians and allied professionals, such as surveyors, consultants and trades, develop their skills and knowledge to the high national standard recognised by the electro-technical industry.

Our practical industrial electrical course, running at our state of the art Technology Training Centre, will equip you with the skills needed to carry out electrical maintenance on 110 volt, 240 volt and 415 volt systems. Build a working knowledge and the necessary theory to construct control circuits, to fault find and rectify faults in circuitry and components.

 

 

 

Author

EEF Instructor

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