Could I, or one of my employees, carry out Portable Appliance Testing in-house?
Yes, however, you would need to ensure that any person who carries this electrical testing out is competent to do so. The Electricity at Work Regulations 1989 guidance on Regulation 4(3) state that: "The operation, maintenance and testing of electrical systems and equipment should be carried out only by those person who are competent for the particular class of work." This is covered by the IET Code of Practice for In-Service Inspection and Testing of Electrical Equipment which states: "Those carrying out inspection and testing must be competent to undertake the inspection and, where appropriate, testing of electrical equipment an appliances having due regard to their own safety and that of others.
The tester must have an understanding of the modes of electrical, mechanical or thermal damage to electrical equipment and appliances and their flexes, which may be encountered in any environment.
Training must include the identification of equipment and appliance types to determine the test procedures and frequency of inspection and testing. Persons must be familiar with the test instruments used and in particular their limitations and restrictions so as to achieve repeatable results without damaging the equipment of appliance.
The importance must be stressed of recording inspection and test results, labeling and reporting to managers for action on defects, trends or changes in their assessment of risk.
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