This is a benchmark for test and tag as well as electrical safety and is referred to in many other New Zealand and Australian electrical standards. It also incorporates the physical safety of the item to be tested, and if the item is in an unsafe state there are actions and steps outlined to remedy this. The Standard covers electrical equipment that connects to the mains supply by a flexible cord and plug. Created to minimise electrical hazards in the workplace. Appliances are inspected for damage, and various measurements are made to the appliances' earth continuity , insulation , polarity , and physical condition.
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This instrument commences on the day after it is registered on the Federal Register of Legislative Instruments. I am satisfied that this code of practice was developed by a process described in section 2 of the Work Health and Safety Act Michaelia Cash.
Minister for Employment. Table of Contents. PART A The risk management process PART B Managing the risks of electrical work A code of practice applies to anyone who has a duty of care in the circumstances described in the code. In most cases, following an approved code of practice would achieve compliance with the health and safety duties in the WHS Act, in relation to the subject matter of the code.
Like regulations, codes of practice deal with particular issues and do not cover all hazards or risks that may arise. The health and safety duties require duty holders to consider all risks associated with work, not only those for which regulations and codes of practice exist. Courts may regard a code of practice as evidence of what is known about a hazard, risk or control and may rely on the code in determining what is r e asonably practicable in the circumstances to which the code relates.
Compliance with the WHS Act and Regulations may be achieved by following another method, such as a technical or an industry standard, if it provides an equivalent or higher standard of work health and safety than the code.
An inspector may refer to an approved code of practice when issuing an improvement or prohibition notice. This Code provides practical guidance for persons conducting a business or undertaking on managing electrical risks in the workplace. It applies to all workplaces where a person conducting a business or undertaking:. Further information about construction work can be found in the Code of Practice: Construction Work.
This Code is divided into two parts dealing with:. This Code also includes various references to provisions of the WHS Act and Regulations which set out the legal requirements. These references are not exhaustive.
Electrical risks are risks of death, electric shock or other injury caused directly or indirectly by electricity. The most common electrical risks and causes of injury are:. The electric shock may be received by direct or indirect contact, tracking through or across a medium, or by arcing. For example, electric shock may result from indirect contact where a conductive part that is not normally energised becomes energised due to a fault e.
The injuries are often suffered because arcing or explosion or both occur when high fault currents are present. Burning and arcing associated with electrical equipment may release various gases and contaminants. Electric shocks from faulty electrical equipment may also lead to related injuries, including falls from ladders, scaffolds or other elevated work platforms.
Other injuries or illnesses may include muscle spasms, palpitations, nausea, vomiting, collapse and unconsciousness. Workers using electricity may not be the only ones at risk—faulty electrical equipment and poor electrical installations can lead to fires that may also cause death or injury to others. A person conducting a business or undertaking has the primary duty under the WHS Act to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that workers and other persons at the workplace are not exposed to electrical risks arising from the business or undertaking.
This duty requires eliminating electrical risks or, if that is not reasonably practicable, minimising the risks so far as is reasonably practicable. The WHS Regulations include more specific requirements for managing electrical risks at the workplace. For example, all persons conducting a business or undertaking have duties to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that electrical equipment and installations at the workplace are without risks to health and safety of persons.
Persons conducting a business or undertaking with management or control of a workplace have a duty to ensure effective residual current devices RCDs are used in certain high-risk environments as defined in the regulations. Persons conducting a business or undertaking carrying out electrical work must comply with the prohibition on electrical work on energised electrical equipment subject to certain exceptions.
These persons may also have duties under local electrical safety laws. Persons conducting a business or undertaking should ensure electrical installation work is carried out by qualified persons and testing and compliance requirements are met. Designers, manufacturers, importers, suppliers, and installers of electrical equipment and installations that could be used for work must ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that they are without risks to health and safety.
Designers and manufacturers of electrical equipment or installations must ensure they are designed and manufactured so that electrical risks are eliminated or, if this not reasonably practicable, minimised so far as is reasonably practicable. Officers , such as company directors, have a duty to exercise due diligence to ensure that the business or undertaking complies with the WHS Act and Regulations. This includes taking reasonable steps to ensure that the business or undertaking has and uses appropriate resources and processes to eliminate or minimise electrical risks at the workplace.
Workers must take reasonable care for their own health and safety and not adversely affect the health and safety of other persons. Workers must comply with any reasonable instruction and cooperate with any reasonable policy or procedure relating to health and safety at the workplace.
This means that if electrical equipment is provided by the person conducting the business or undertaking, the worker must use it in accordance with the information, instruction and training provided on its use. Duty holders may have additional legal obligations under state or territory electrical safety legislation. Regulation A person conducting a business or undertaking must manage risks to health and safety associated with electrical risks at the workplace.
This Code includes guidance on how to manage electrical risks in the workplace by following a systematic process that involves:. Guidance on the general risk management process is available in the Code of Practice: How to manage work health and safety risks. Consultation involves sharing of information, giving workers a reasonable opportunity to express views and taking those views into account before making decisions on health and safety matters.
Section 47 A person conducting a business or undertaking must consult, so far as is reasonably practicable, with workers who carry out work for the business or undertaking and who are or are likely to be directly affected by a work health and safety matter.
Section 48 If the workers are represented by a health and safety representative, the consultation must involve that representative. Consultation with workers and their health and safety representatives is required at every step of the risk management process.
By drawing on the experience, knowledge and ideas of your workers you are more likely to identify all hazards and choose effective risk controls. Section 46 A person conducting a business or undertaking must, so far as is reasonably practicable, consult, cooperate and coordinate activities with all other persons who have a work health or safety duty in relation to the same matter. Sometimes you may have responsibility for a health and safety matter along with other business operators who are involved in the same activities or who share the same workplace.
In these situations, you should exchange information to find out who is doing what and work together in a cooperative and coordinated way so that all risks are eliminated or minimised so far as is reasonably practicable. For example, if you engage an electrical contractor to carry out electrical work at your workplace you should consult with the contractor on how in general the work is to be carried out and in particular how risks to their health and safety and that of others at the workplace are to be managed while the work is carried out.
You should also cooperate with the electrical contractor e. Further guidance on consultation is available in the Code of Practice: Work health and safety consultation, cooperation and coordination. Section 19 A person conducting a business or undertaking must ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the provision of any information, training, instruction or supervision that is necessary to protect all persons from risks to their health and safety arising from work carried out.
Regulation 39 You must ensure that information, training and instruction provided to a worker is suitable and adequate having regard to:. You must ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that the information, training and instruction is provided in a way that is readily understandable by any person to whom it is provided.
Formal or on-the-job training may be appropriate depending on the circumstances. Examples of training are:. Special needs of workers should be taken into account in deciding the structure , content and delivery of training, including literacy levels, work experience and specific skills required to carry out the work. Identifying hazards involves finding all of the tasks, situations and sequences of events that could potentially cause harm.
Hazards arising from electrical equipment or installations may arise from:. Electrical equipment may be subject to operating conditions that are likely to result in damage to the equipment or a reduction in its expected life span. For example, equipment may be at greater risk of damage if used outdoors or in a factory or workshop environment.
Exposure to high electromagnetic fields may also present a potential hazard for workers with some medical conditions, for example pace makers. You must inform workers and other persons at the workplace of any potential electromagnetic hazards at the workplace that may affect a medical condition. You must also manage risks to health and safety arising out of electromagnetic hazards, including eliminating the risk so far as is reasonably practicable.
If that is not reasonably practicable you must minimise the risk so far as is reasonably practicable. Potential electrical hazards may be identified in a number of different ways including:. Risk assessment involves considering what could happen if someone is exposed to a hazard consequence and the likelihood of it happening.
For work on energised electrical equipment, the WHS Regulations require that a risk assessment be prepared in writing by a competent person; for more information see Part B of this Code. A risk assessment can help determine:. To assess the risk associated with electrical hazards consider:.
For example, direct contact causing electrocution, fire or explosion causing serious burns or death. Other factors that may affect consequence and likelihood include:. Once hazards have been identified and the risks assessed, appropriate control measures must be put in place. The ways of controlling risks are ranked from the highest level of protection and reliability to the lowest. This ranking is known as the hierarchy of risk control. You must work through this hierarchy to choose the control that most effectively eliminates or minimises the risk in the circumstances, so far as is reasonably practicable.
This may involve a single control measure or a combination of two or more different controls. The most effective control measure is to remove the hazard or hazardous work practice. By designing-in or designing-out certain features, hazards may be eliminated. Replacing a hazardous process or material with one that is less hazardous will reduce the hazard, and hence the risk. For example, it may be reasonably practicable to use extra-low voltage electrical equipment such as a battery-operated tool rather than a tool that is plugged into mains electricity.
Preventing workers from coming into contact with the source of an electrical hazard will reduce the relevant risks. Use engineering control measures to minimise the risk, for example installing residual current devices to reduce the risk of receiving a fatal electric shock.
Administrative controls involve the use of safe work practices to control the risk, for example establishing exclusion zones, use of permits and warning signs. PPE includes protective eyewear, insulated gloves, hard hats, aprons and breathing protection. Most forms of PPE are not relevant to minimising electrical risks in workplaces, except in relation to energised electrical work.
Administrative controls and PPE do nothing to change the hazard itself. They rely on people behaving as expected and require a high level of supervision. Exclusive reliance on administrative controls and PPE must only occur where other measures are not reasonably practicable or as an interim control while the preferred control measure is being implemented.
Its main goal is to ensure workplaces are safe by setting out recommendations in relation to testing V, 3 phase and low voltage electrical equipment. Specifically, these recommendations focus on topics that range from Test and Tag frequencies , inspection and testing specifications, record keeping and other general guidelines. This extends to any equipment or appliances brought into the workplace i. If the equipment is not safe and causes an accident, both the employer and the person who provided the appliance may be liable. Often referred to as test and tag, it's also denoted as testing and tagging, portable appliance testing and PAT Testing. The Standard states that anybody that acquires the practical and theoretical skills through the following are allowed to test and tag in Australia:. The majority of our test and tag students have no electrical knowledge at all and they become a Competent Person from the training course.
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