Health and Safety Systems Ltd
Specialising in Health and Safety in the New Zealand Workplace

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Electrical Testing and Tagging - Do you need to?

Is it a legal requirement under the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 to test and tag electrical appliances and equipment in the workplace?  The short answer is “no” but this requires further explanation.

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The Electrical Safety Regulations define an electrical fitting or appliance as deemed to be electrically safe if it has a current tag. WorkSafe NZ’s approach is that testing and tagging is a useful tool to check electrical equipment is safe but that it is not mandatory to complete tagging and testing.

It is a legal requirement that equipment is electrically safe and is maintained in a safe condition.  This means that equipment must be checked every day on construction sites for visible signs of damage.  Testing and tagging is one way to detect faults that may not be visible, and because of this it is viewed as a practicable step to take towards ensuring electrical safety on site.

Regardless of testing and tagging, all electrical appliances used on a construction site must be connected to an RCD.  This is also a legal requirement.

In an office environment with a modern switchboard there is likely to be an RCD fitted and this reduces that risk of possible electric shock from faulty equipment.  If you decide not to test and tag in the office you should still check leads, plugs and switches from time to time for signs of visible damage.

Our advice is that testing and tagging is a good step to take even in the office.  Our personal experience with this is
that the process did highlight a couple of multi boards that were dodgy and were replaced as a result.  
The risk here was not necessarily electric shock but fire due to overheating.

It would be worth checking with your insurance company to see if testing and tagging is a policy requirement.

Please contact us if you require any further information on this subject or if you wish to discuss your own situation further. 

Email: info@healthandsafetysystems.co.nz