"Electricity kills and injures people. Around 1000 electrical accidents at work are reported to HSE each year and about 25 people die of their injuries." Source the HSE
The law requires employers and the self-employed to ensure electrical appliances are maintained. The regulations also state that maintenance and inspection is to be carried out by a competent person.
The legislation of specific relevance to electrical maintenance is the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989, the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992 and the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1988.
The Electricity at Work Regulations 1989 states: "As may be necessary to prevent danger, all systems shall be maintained so as to prevent, so far as is reasonably practicable, such danger" (Regulation 4(2))
Persons to be competent to prevent danger and injury 16."No person shall be engaged in any work activity where technical knowledge or experience is necessary to prevent danger or, where appropriate, injury, unless he possesses such knowledge or experience, or is under such degree of supervision as may be appropriate having regard to the nature of the work."
Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER)1998 requires every employer to ensure that equipment is suitable for the use it is provided (Reg 4(1)) and only used for work for which it is suitable (Reg 4(3)) They require every employer to ensure equipment is maintained in good order (Reg 5) and inspected as necessary to ensure it is maintained in a safe condition (Reg 6)
Regulation 5 of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER)1998 states:"Every employer shall ensure that work equipment is maintained in an efficient state, in efficient working order and in good repair"
The HSE may issue an inprovement notice, such as the one on the link below if Portable Appliance Testing is not carried out correctly.
For more information on the law please see http://www.hse.gov.uk/
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