Wednesday, 5th May 2021, 9:43:51pm

images yellseaward png

Site Approach
Upon arrival on site our test engineer will introduce himself to the client’s representative and explain the purpose and nature of the work to be carried out. This person will then be asked to accompany our engineer around the site to highlight any sensitive areas and introduce the IT manager who should confirm any arrangements that have been made for shutting down any IT workstations.


Standards
The inspection and testing shall be carried out in accordance with the requirements of the following regulations and publications:
Electricity at Work Regulations 1989
Health & Safety at Work Act of 1974
IEE Code of Practice for the in service inspection and Testing of Portable Electrical Equipment


Identification of equipment
Every piece of electrical equipment will be allocated a Asset ID / number. This will be used to cross reference test results to the certificate supplied. A register of equipment will then be produced to include the following details:
Asset number
Location in which the appliance/asset is kept/used
Description of appliance
PASS / FAIL result for tests completed
Date of test
Testing Procedures as stated by the IEE Code of Practice for In service Inspection and
Testing or Portable Electrical Equipment.


Visual Inspection
A visual inspection of the appliance shall be carried out prior to any testing. The inspection includes the following:
Socket Outlet is there any evidence of overheating, cracks or damage?
Plug is the flexible cable secure, are the pins insulated, is it free from cracks, or damage and signs of overheating?
Flex is in good condition, free from cuts, fraying or damage?
Appliance does it work? . Is it free from damage? . Can it be used safely?

In addition, the visual inspection will check that the means of disconnection from the mains supply is also readily accessible and that wherever possible, flexible cords are positioned so that they do not present a hazard.
All minor faults identified during the visual inspection, such as incorrectly rated fuses, damaged 13amp plugs, loose connections will be rectified prior to the testing procedure.

Testing
Subject to a satisfactory visual inspection, the following sequences of test are carried out.
Earth continuity – Class 1 appliances only
Insulation resistance (where appropriate)
Operation/load test
Earth leakage test


Labelling

A sample of the labels we use is shown here. Any FAILED appliances are taken out of service and are
immediately brought to the attention of the client representative on site.

                                               

                             

Report
Upon completion a report is produced usually within 5 working days listing the appliances tested, the results of the tests performed, and details of any remedial repairs necessary. We also provide the engineers observations on all failed equipment.

Are there any case studies about portable appliance testing?

A high street travel agent's approach to PAT

A high street travel agency thought about what it needed to do to maintain its portable electrical equipment. As their work generally included office work and dealing with customers the manager considered that health and safety risks would be generally low. The portable electrical equipment was used in a clean and dry shop by a small number of employees. In deciding what action was needed:

  • the manager thought about the type of portable equipment that was used in their shop and the level of risk that it might create;
  • she looked for electrical equipment in the shop and found that there were a number of computers, a fax, two printers and a vacuum cleaner;
  • she then thought about the likelihood that the items could become damaged:The manager kept a note of the checks in her diary to remind herself to re-inspect the equipment.
    • Computers, printers and faxes were not moved around much and were positioned so that the cables could not become trapped, so the probability that items might be damaged was extremely low. The manager decided that they would be maintained by a visual inspection every 5 years.
    • The vacuum cleaner was heavily used. The manager remembered that the cable was repaired 6 months ago by an electrician as it had been pulled out of the cable grip, so she knew that in future it would need to be looked at more often. It was decided that the vacuum should have a visual inspection every 6 months and that employees would be encouraged to look for signs of damage to the plug and cable before plugging it in.
  • Only the vacuum cleaner was thought to present a high risk, so the manager decided to get this tested after twelve months and review this after 24 months.
  • None of the remaining equipment in use was thought to present a high risk, so the manager decided that full portable appliance testing was not needed for these items.

Key Points:

  • Portable electrical equipment must be maintained to prevent danger.
  • For most portable electrical equipment in a low-risk workplace, a portable appliance test is not needed.
  • Working out what you have to do is not time consuming or complicated.
  • Simply looking for signs of damage is a good way of Maintaining portable electric equipment.

HSE's approach to maintaining portable appliances in its own offices

In 2011, the HSE reviewed its approach to portable appliance maintenance in its own offices. Thinking about the type of equipment in use, and how it was used, the HSE looked back at the results from its annual testing of portable appliances across its estate over the last five years. Using the results of the previous tests, the HSE decided that further portable appliance tests are not needed within the foreseeable future or at all for certain types of portable equipment. Also, they decided to continue to monitor any faults reported as a result of user checks and visual inspections and review its maintenance system if evidence suggests that it needs revising. Electrical equipment will continue to be maintained by a series of user checks and visual inspections by staff that have had some training.

Key Points:

  • Annual portable appliance testing is not always necessary in low risk environments
  • You do not need to be an electrician to carry out visual inspections
  • Low cost user checks and visual inspections are a good method of Maintaining portable electric equipment
Go to top