As you’ll know already, when you’re in business you’re legally required to ensure all equipment at your place of work is electrically safe and maintained in a safe condition.
Why do you need portable appliance testing (PAT)? Because many businesses including electrical installation and construction sites often use portable tools and devices. Portable appliances are electrical equipment. If the equipment develops a fault, it could cause serious injury or worse. For this reason PAT is critical.
It’s well documented that injuries and deaths are occurring every year in the construction, electricity, gas, water and waste services industries. The work environments are a dangerous place. You need to ensure that all electrical equipment is being tested and tagged to maintain safe operations by staff. The last thing you want is to be responsible for the injury or death of an employee.
There are heavy penalties for not maintaining a safe workplace. You need to be responsible for your portable equipment. Getting it tested by professionals is the first step.
Which portable equipment needs to be tested?
The short answer is, if the equipment uses electricity it needs to be tested.
Here’s a list of the types of portable equipment you’ll need to test:
- Portable appliances
- Hand-held appliances such as power tools, hairdryers
- Transportable equipment (usually stationary but can be moved around
- Extension leads
- Portable RCDs
Even though hire equipment doesn’t come under the category of portable equipment, they still need to be tested.
Whether it’s new, repaired or serviced, or it’s hired, the AS/NZS 3012:2010 Electrical installations – Construction states that it needs to be inspected. Testing is best done by a professional such as Jim’s Test & Tag. Professional testers use specific equipment and know exactly what to look for. It’s the safest way forward.
How often does the portable equipment need to be tested?
The frequency of testing depends on the nature of the equipment and the environment you’re working in.
The following is a list of periodic verification intervals:
- New equipment must be tested prior to use, and then regularly, based on the type of equipment and the environment
- Transportable structures and transportable equipment every 6 months
- Portable equipment every 3 months
- Hired equipment at least once a month, and prior to use
Why do you need portable appliance testing if the equipment is hired? Doesn’t the company you got it from test it? This is a question that’s sometimes asked. Hire equipment needs to be tested for reliability because the history of the equipment is totally unknown. Testing is done before use and then ongoing with high frequency.
Why do you need portable appliance testing for RCDs?
Portable RCDs are designed to protect you from faulty equipment and unsafe electrical currents. They work by plugging the RCD into the power socket, and then plugging the equipment directly into the plug at the end of the portable RCD extension cable.
Even though RCDs are designed to protect you, they still need testing themselves. They are electrical equipment, and may develop a fault just like any other equipment. Testing is done by the user each time it’s connected to the power outlet, before connecting the equipment to it. It needs to be tested at least once a day while being used.
The heavy testing frequency is because they’re an ‘at the source’ protection. If the equipment being used develops a fault and the RCD is not functioning the danger won’t be detected. This compromises the safety of the worker. RCDs need testing.
Jim’s Test & Tag team are the experts you can rely on
Why do you need portable appliance testing by professionals? There are a few reasons for this, and the key reason is that it’s done correctly.
Those who’ve used Jim’s Test & Tag know the quality of our work and why businesses choose us to test and tag electrical equipment.
Our team are highly trained in diagnosing faults.
We use certified equipment to do the testing.
We’re precise and thorough, and keep accurate records.
With these records you can identify the person who last tested your appliances/equipment. We’re always accountable for the safety status of each inspected item. This gives you added peace of mind knowing that your business is in the hands of experienced professionals.
Your entire workplace can be inspected and tested, along with any appliance and equipment testing. With accurate records, you’ll have no doubts as to when the next appliance or equipment testing is due.
It’s the only way to go for business.
Get expert test and tagging from the team you can rely on, Jim’s Test & Tag.