PAT Testing News Round-Up - Issue 49
27th August 2015
This issue covers:
- Raising standards in the PAT industry
- Innovative Apollo 600 granted patent protection
- Free PAT seminars focus on growth and compliance
- Safer By Design is electrical product safety conference theme
- Special 'Summer Sizzler' PAT offer
- Local news reports highlight fire risks of faulty appliances
- Did you know that...
The PAT Testing Network (PTN) continues to expand and strive to establish higher standards in the sector.
The growing membership group is encouraging those involved in PAT testing work to join it and support its efforts to provide a representative body for the sector.
In particular it wants to improve the standards of people operating in the industry, through accreditations, training, member discussions, forums and events.
In addition, it also wants to improve PAT education to establish better mutual understanding between test companies, the public and customers.
In terms of direct assistance PTN hosts a lively Facebook discussion group where members can seek advice and exchange views on PAT test matters.
The group also has a You Tube video programme and issues updates via twitter and its website. A Complaint Resolution service is also available for those members experiencing difficulties with a customer. For full details visit www.pattestnetwork.co.uk
Seaward's most advanced portable appliance tester has been awarded a UK patent that recognises its unique ability to combine formal visual inspections and all required electrical testing as part of a formal safety risk assessment process.
The Apollo 600 has been specifically designed to incorporate a range of special features in line with HSE guidance to ensure that the inspection and testing of workplace electrical appliances is proportionate to the safety risks presented.
To meet this need, as well as an onboard risk assessment tool to help determine re-test intervals, the multi-purpose PAT tester incorporates a built-in digital camera to enable high quality images to be tagged against appliance test records.
Along with the storage of test results against a unique appliance identification number, the integral camera enables comprehensive and completely traceable electrical safety records to be maintained and future test programmes to be managed effectively.
The Apollo 600 incorporates all of the electrical safety tests required by the IET Code of Practice, alongside a range of additional test functions, including the ability to test fixed appliances.
In addition to PAT testing, for those with more general responsibility for health and safety inspections, the Apollo 600’s universal risk assessment tool enables other work place hazards to be determined, inspected and recorded.It is this unique combination of performance features that has enabled the Apollo 600 to be granted a patent. For more details about the Apollo 600 PAT tester visit www.seaward.co.uk/apollo600
Seaward is hosting a series of free seminars to help those responsible for maintaining safety at work to better understand portable appliance safety testing.
The events are aimed at dutyholders and those involved in managing electrical safety regimes in the workplace as part of preventative maintenance programmes.
Specific topics will include an overview of the regulations and the IET Code of Practice, training requirements and competency issues, and what a common sense approach to testing actually means.
For those involved in the supply of PAT services, the seminars will provide expert advice on current industry best practice, explain the benefits of testing that can be passed on to clients and highlight new opportunities for business growth.
The morning seminars will be provided during July to September at a number of towns and cities around the UK. Details here
This year's Electrical Products Safety Conference will adopt the ‘Safer by Design’ theme to examine the sale and use of electrical consumer products with key concerns being addressed by industry experts.
Hosted by Electrical Safety First the annual event will be held at Church House, Westminster, London on 17th November.
Included in the agenda will be a look at safer products – accounting for foreseeable use and misuse and a review of the UK’s product recall system. Presentations will also cover gathering and using sources of intelligence and the proliferation of fake electrical products being sold online.
This event is relevant for anybody working in the design, manufacture, distribution or retailing of electrical products, as well as regulators, product safety professionals, lawyers, standards-makers and consumer protection organisations. Full details are here
Seaward has introduced a ‘Sizzling Summer Special’ promotion, giving away free PAT record keeping and health and safety software, with online training.
For a limited period only, buyers of the Seaward Apollo 600 PAT tester kit will receive a free added value package of extras, worth £249, that includes a 12 month licence for the PAT Guard 3 Elite software, access to a practical online training course with exam and a special PAT testing guide.
The Apollo 600 tester is specially designed to meet the current best practice advice for a risk based approach to PAT and includes a built-in risk assessment tool allowing a range of workplace hazards to be recorded, evaluated and corrective actions determined.
The hand held unit includes all the in-service electrical safety tests required by the IET Code of Practice for plug-in appliances, and also has the ability to test permanently connected equipment.
In addition, a host of special features includes an on board digital camera to enable visual inspections to be tagged against records for maximum traceability and full record keeping, alongside Bluetooth transfer of test results, or downloading to a USB drive.
As well as extensive PAT records and simple asset management, this intuitive program enables a range of test and inspection certificates to be produced for more general workplace health and safety matters.
The Sizzling Summer Special offer from Seaward is available until the end of August and provides a complete one stop PAT package deal to support those already involved in safety testing and those who may want to enter the industry. More details at www.seaward.co.uk/summerApollo
Local news stories continue to focus on the fire risk dangers of faulty and unsafe electrical appliances – with tragic consequences in some cases.
In East Anglia, it was reported that an 84-year-old woman died in a house fire in Clare, west Suffolk which was caused by an electrical fault in her bedroom. Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service, who investigated the fire said overloaded extension leads were identified as the most likely cause of the fire.
Beneath the remains of the bed, two electrical extension leads were discovered which had been used for two electric blankets, two table lamps, a cordless phone charger and a radio.
Examination of the leads indicated that one had suffered a fault and probably overheated beneath the edge of the bed where it had been covered by bed clothes.
Meanwhile, in the North East residents were warned to check their electrical appliances after a faulty dehumidifier that had been recalled by the manufacturer caused a fire at a home in Cleadon, South Tyneside.
The Wickes dehumidifier – model SKU712919 – was subject to a product recall in 2012, due to a potential safety issue with the internal wiring that may cause it to overheat and affected models sold between October 2002 and December 2008.
Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service said the dehumidifier was completely destroyed by the blaze, along with areas of flooring and skirting, with smoke damage to other parts of the property.
Elsewhere in the North East, a family with young children had to flee their home after an electrical fault caused a kitchen socket to burst into flames. The fire in a property in North Shields was traced to an electrical fault in the washing machine and the situation was brought quickly under control.
The District Manager for North Tyneside Graeme Hurst, Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service, said: “Appliances such as washing machines, dishwashers and fridges are often fitted under worktops or inside kitchen units, where getting to sockets may be difficult. Ideally, these appliances should be controlled by a switched fuse connection unit mounted above the worktop, where you can reach it easily to turn off the power supply if a problem occurs."
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