In: Portable Appliance Testing

Electrical appliance testing is an inspection of the appliance casing, plug damage and wiring, and an electrical test. Depending whether or not the appliance has passed or failed a sticker will be stuck on each electrical appliance during testing to signify whether the electrical appliance has failed or passed the PAT test, along with a PAT test certificate.

Electrical appliance testing is essential in regards to a company’s health & safety policy to ensure members of staff are not harmed or at danger by any electrical equipment within a business premises. Electrical appliance testing should be performed regularly to protect employees and customers against any accidents and liability within the workplace. Electrical appliance testing is scheduled by a business in accordance with guidelines stated in the IEE Code of Practice.

Electrical appliance testing assesses electrical equipment and guarantees that it is safe to use. In a place of work electrical appliance testing should be scheduled yearly in order to ensure maximum protection of employees and in order to protect the employer from being liable if there is faulty equipment which may cause injury.

There is controversy whether electrical appliance testing is a legal requirement, however, it is not stated by law that electrical appliance testing is vital, unless in a work place where all electrical appliances must be safe. When asked “What is electrical appliance testing?” Government guidelines state that electrical appliance testing or PAT testing is the best way to guarantee electrical safety. If an accident were to occur due to a faulty unmaintained electrical appliance the company could be fined.

Additionally, landlords may also ask “What is electrical appliance testing?” because they are obliged undergo electrical appliance testing on a regular basis, especially if they are renting their property through an estate agent. Landlords require electrical appliance testing in order to ensure that electrical appliances are safe for tenants. In factories, schools and other places of education electrical appliance testing may prevent fires and injuries which is why portable appliances need to be tested, and a PAT test ensures this safety.

Electrical appliance testing ensures there is no danger of electrical equipment; however, without an electrical PAT test the person responsible could be charged with manslaughter, again, this would be a result of not complying with regulations. In addition, without an electrical PAT test a property’s insurance may be invalid. It is a landlord’s responsibility to be vigilant in regards to electrical safety, if this is ignored and there is not an electrical PAT test certificate presented the landlord may be sued by their tenant for civil damages.

Electrical appliance testing is important because it is indefinite that electrical equipment will continue to operate correctly. Once an electrical appliance is brought onto a property, it is the owner or employer’s responsibility to ensure that it functions safely and testing is strongly recommended. Portable electrical equipment testing should include an inventory and a recorded visual inspection. Appliances to consider testing for are:

• A domestic appliance, for example, kettles and vacuum cleaners
• Extension leads
• Mains-powered electrical appliance brought onto the premises, e.g. radio

By law, as a landlord or employer it is imperative to ensure that an electrical appliance system is safe and testing is completed. There are approximately 2,200 electrical fires in homes in the UK, even though the majority of these houses are insured; only a property which has completed electrical appliance testing will be covered by their insurers. Properties which have electrical appliance testing reduce the amount of fires exceptionally and show that the owner or employer had acted responsibly towards the safety of the property and tenants. Electrical appliance testing reduces risks and possible problems which may otherwise cause injury or damage to properties and people residing in properties. A hand held electrical appliance which is connected to the electricity supply, or intended/capable of being moved whilst connected to the electricity supply would need to be attached to a plug and socket, which would need to undergo testing.