Electrical Test and Tag of Equipment is required because the occupational health and safety OH&S act throughout Australia demands that portable electrical equipment be checked for safety.
AS3760:2010 R.C.D.'s Portable type (PRCD), socket outlet type and fixed switchboard type.
ARK testing defines tagging and testing as a preventative process to reduce the risk of electric shock when using an electrical appliance.
The occupational health and safety OH&S act throughout Australia demands that portable electrical equipment including electrical hand tools such as saws and drills, as well as power boards, computers, power supplies, extension leads, kitchen portable appliances and all other electrical equipment that is used in the commercial and industrial workplace must be tested and tagged.
Due to the hazardous nature of construction work regular inspection and testing of electrical equipment must be carried out in accordance with the requirements of the OHS regulation. The requirements are outlined in the work cover code of practice under electrical practices for construction work
Regular Checking of Electrical Equipment
The Victorian Energy Safety Regulator, Energy Safe Victoria (ESV), has received a number of incident reports from construction sites and other locations around Victoria where workers have suffered an electrical shock or burn while using faulty electrical tools and equipment that had a current test tag attached.
Equipment with a current test tag is not guaranteed to be safe for the remainder of the test cycle. ESV has seen many instances where the supply cord has been nicked, or the casing broken. exposing live parts to possible contact and electric shock on equipment with a current test tag fitted.
The following safety precautions should be adopted to prevent possible electrocution.
- Test and tag electrical leads, tools and equipment regularly.
- Visually inspect electrical leads, tools and equipment for damage before each use.
- Use safety switches (also called RCDs) when using electrical tools & equipment.
- Use competent people to repair damaged electrical leads tools and equipment
- Use damaged electrical leads, tools and equipment.
- Use electrical leads. tools and equipment in damp or wet conditions unless they are specially designed for use in those conditions.
- Place electrical leads in areas where they may be damaged (e.g. on the ground, through doorways and over sharp edges).
- Overload electrical circuits.
- Use modified electrical tools and equipment.
Testing of Electrical Equipment
Portable electrical equipment including flexible electrical cords needs to be regularly inspected for wear and mechanical damage and periodically tested for earth continuity and insulation resistance.
Procedures for testing of electrical leads,tools and equipment and the frequency of these tests can be found in:
- Joint Australian and New Zealand Standard AS/NZS 3760 In-service safety inspection and testing of electrical equipment; and
- Joint Australian and New Zealand Standard AS/NZS 3012 Electrical installations - construction and demolition sites