As we discussed on our WHY page, the legislation in New Zealand does not specify a mandatory method of ensuring your company’s equipment is electrically safe. But it does give one method of doing so, and that is to test in accordance with AS/NZS 3760 In-Service Safety Inspection and Testing of Electrical Equipment.
Why use this Standard?
For test and tag service providers, this Standard should be their bible as it stipulates how different types of appliances should be tested and what readings constitute an electrically safe appliance.
The Standard also differentiates between you (the responsible person) and the person carrying out the testing (the competent person). As the responsible person, you need to ensure that whoever is conducting your testing is competent to do so.
They should be able to provide an explanation of how they are going to conduct the testing and be backed up by extensive training and experience. Would you trust a mechanic to check your car for safety if they had only attended a one-day course on how to be a mechanic?
It is hard to determine if a device requires power to energise internal switches or contacts. Therefore, where possible, our technicians perform a current leakage test on all appliances while they are running. This exceeds the standard for some devices but meets the standard for ALL devices.
Asset Reports and Test Results
Whilst not mandatory, the Standard lists some criteria for what should be in reports if they are provided. As with a Warrant of Fitness (WOF) on your car, you would probably like to know that you have some proof that certain things have been checked.
These reports can be vitally important should an incident occur and you are asked to explain how, when and by whom your testing was carried out.
Asset reports and test results should form part of the reporting package provided by your test and tag service provider. This not only gives you proof of how it was done, but it also allows you to check that your provider is conducting the various tests required.
The tags that are attached to tested appliances need to remain legible for the duration of their validity period. It must identify (within the organisation) who has conducted the testing, when it was conducted and when it is next due. If the testing has been carried out in accordance with AS/NZS 3760, then this also needs to be stated on the tag.
A hand written tag has no record of how the testing has been conducted, unlike printed tags from a Portable Appliance Tester (PAT). Printed tags should have a unique code that can correspond with the reports so that you can easily find the results for a particular item.
Test & Tag Service Provider Checklist
We have created a simple checklist for you to use when comparing test and tag providers or for checking your current provider or testing regime. Click here to download Test & Tag Service Provider Checklist.