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130 Electrical Fires in New Zealand Schools in the last 5 years

After a fire at a Christchurch school that gutted 4 classrooms in September 2019 FENZ (Fire and Emergency New Zealand) identified the fire had started from a faulty multibox.  You can read more here https://www.odt.co.nz/star-news/star-christchurch/cause-russley-school-fire-found.  FENZ also mentioned that there have been 130 electrical fires in New Zealand Schools in the last 5 years.

We are often asked "what is the point of a test and tag program" or get told "tag and test programs are pointless as they don't guarantee an item is safe".  Our answer to these comments is always the same - a test and tag program is a recognised control for electrical risks in the workplace.  It is the regular physical inspection and testing of portable electrical items to a recognised standard in order to detect and remove faulty equipment before it can cause an injury through electric shock or a catastrophic fire.  The other thing we say is that we have a team of technicians carrying out testing and tagging across a range of sites and industries every day and we ALWAYS find items that fail the testing and are faulty and should not be in service.  This tells us that a tag and test program is a very important part of a businesses safety risk controls.

At LecSafe NZ not only do we implement and manage test and tag programs for our clients that are compliant with the AS/NZS 3760 standard we also provide practical advice for our clients around other electrical risks that may be present in their workplaces.  It is common for our technicians to identify for clients (on top of the items that fail the tag and test process):

- Overloaded multi boxes

- Loose / broken power outlets

- Incorrect use of extension leads

We are also aware of the cost / budget pressures that schools and other clients are under.  This is why we ensure the programs we implement utilise the correct testing frequencies to manage the risk as well as ensuring only electrical items that require testing are tested.  To find out more about our test and tag programs click here or get in touch to arrange an on site review of your current program and an overview of how we would manage it for you. 

Phone - 0800 LECSAFE (532 7233)

Email - enquiries@lecsafe.co.nz

Contact form - https://lecsafe.co.nz/contact/