Recently the Electrical Safety Council (ECA) conducted a study revealing that electricity kills at least one person a week in their own homes whilst almost 1000 people a day are seriously injured. This is in the main through homeowners embarking upon their own work in a bid to save money, with limited understanding of the risks associated.
The majority of homeowners will not have access to the required test equipment and may not even be aware that much of the electrical work they may carry out is illegal unless it is notified to their local authority building control and tested by a registered individual. More information on the study can be found here. Approved document P (Part P) of the Building Regulations outlines the type of work that must be notified, with only minor work being allowed to be conducted without the need for notification.
Such work might include replacing a damaged switch / socket, addition of a light or power to an existing circuit or replacing a damaged section of a circuit, however, even these basic tasks are subject to location. Most of the time it is far safer and ultimately less costly to employ the services of a qualified and registered electrician
A small number of electricians falsely claim to be members of registered installer schemes and carry out work illegally, putting consumers at risk and endangering lives with sub-standard installations. Always check your electrician (or tradesman) is registered with a competent persons scheme such as the NICEIC by checking for their company online who keep a list of registered installers and a separate “wall of shame” for companies claiming to be registered.
LP Electrical is trading as LP Homecare
Almost everyone checks their smoke alarm periodically – we are all reminded by the Fire Service to check when we change our clocks twice a year – but do we check the RCD on our fuse box / consumer unit. RCD stands for Residual Current Device and most have a label instructing to test monthly / quarterly. Many who have read the label will think of the inconvenience of resetting half a dozen clocks and appliances after pressing the TEST button and so don’t, but this device is a very important part of your electrical installation. It cuts off the electrical supply to associated circuits under an earth fault condition and prevents electrocution but inactivity of the switch over time through non-pressing of the TEST button can cause it to stick, which you won’t find out until it fails to activate when being electrocuted. So quite simply, before putting the clocks back or forward (and testing your smoke alarms), press the TEST button on your RCD. It could save your life!