Periodic inspections and testing should be carried out to fully ensure the safety of electrical appliances. Frequency of inspection depends on the type, nature and work environment of the equipment. PAT testing does not only apply to the more hazardous environments such as the construction industry but equally to office environments, hotels, schools, retail outlets and any place where employees, customers and the general public may be exposed to risk from a potentially faulty electrical appliance.
The IET (Institution of Engineering and Technology) Code of Practice for PAT testing in the UK and the Irish HSA Guideline are the generally accepted standard. Under this UK code of practice a general guideline has been developed and appliances are categorised according to industry and type. For example the appliance type is categorised as being one of the following; Stationary, Movable, Portable, Handheld or Information Technology. A recommended interval between tests is recommended depending on which industry sector the appliance is being used in. For example in the UK the typical recommended interval between tests on a hand held electric drill on a building site is every 3 months.
In Ireland Section 30 and Section 31 of S.I. 299 relating to Inspection of Work Equipment and its Maintenance and Section 82 in relation to Connectors and Cables together with clarification by the HSA with regard to Section 81 of S.I. 299 as to how it relates to 110V equipment define the requirement for the construction sector in Ireland.
"Portable electrical equipment supplied at a voltage of less than 125V AC such as the majority of electrical equipment used during construction activities is not specifically included in Regulation 81... but must be maintained in a manner fit for safe use and should be subject to an appropriate inspection regime by employers to ensure that this is the case"
There are also guidelines for other sectors also such as industrial and commercial, schools, hotels, offices and shops including equipment used by the public.
To get a copy of the UK Frequency Of Inspection and Testing document and to find out more about the recommendations for your industry contact us at Patcert
The HAE (Hire Association of Europe) has additional requirements e.g. Flash Testing which are even more stringent than that of the general industry requirements and PATCERT’S service fully conforms to the HAE requirements.
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