Here are some helpful links to standards and legislation that frame the work we do for your business.
AS/NZS-3760, In-service Safety Inspection and Testing of Electrical Equipment is a joint Australia and New Zealand Standard. This standard specifies in-service safety inspection and testing protocols and criteria that ensure electrical leads and equipment are safe for use and that the inspections satisfy the OSH obligations of employers and employees. Key components of the standard include:
Testing frequency based on environment and risk
Testing completed by competent persons
- Visual inspection of leads for damage
- Protective earth continuity tests for class 1 equipment
- Insulation testing (by measuring insulation resistance or leakage current)
- Polarity testing in lead sets and cords
- Tags on leads indicating date tested, re test date and tester details
Required documentation includes:
- Register of all equipment
- Register of formal inspection and tests
- Repair register
- Record of faulty equipment showing details or services or corrective actions
Part 2 Health and safety duties:
Subpart 1—Key principles relating to duties
30 Management of risks:
(1) A duty imposed on a person by or under this Act requires the person—
(a) to eliminate risks to health and safety, so far as is reasonably practicable; and
(b) if it is not reasonably practicable to eliminate risks to health and safety, to minimise those risks so far as is reasonably practicable.
(2) A person must comply with subsection (1) to the extent to which the person has, or would reasonably be expected to have, the ability to influence and control the matter to which the risks relate
Subpart 2—Duties of PCBUs:
36 Primary duty of care:
(1) A PCBU must ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health and safety of—
(a) workers who work for the PCBU, while the workers are at work in the business or undertaking; and
(b) workers whose activities in carrying out work are influenced or directed by the PCBU, while the workers are carrying out the work.
(2) A PCBU must ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that the health and safety of other persons is not put at risk from work carried out as part of the conduct of the business or undertaking.
(3) Without limiting subsection (1) or (2), a PCBU must ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable,—
(a) the provision and maintenance of a work environment that is without risks to health and safety; and
(b) the provision and maintenance of safe plant and structures
15: Using works, installations, fittings, appliances, and associated equipment:
(1) A person who owns or operates works, installations, fittings, or appliances must not use, and must not allow any other person to use, the works, installations, fittings, or appliances if the works, installations, fittings, or appliances are electrically unsafe.
(2) A person who uses, or supervises the use of, associated equipment must ensure that the associated equipment is not used in a manner that renders the associated equipment a danger to persons or property.
(3) A person who owns or operates works, installations, fittings, or appliances commits an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a level 2 penalty if he or she uses, or allows another person to use, the works, installations, fittings, or appliances, knowing that, or being reckless as to whether, the works, installations, fittings, or appliances are electrically unsafe.
(4) A person who uses, or supervises the use of, associated equipment commits an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a level 2 penalty if he or she fails to comply with subclause (2).
26: When fittings and appliances in use deemed to be electrically safe:
(1) This regulation applies to a fitting or appliance, other than an electrical medical device, that is in use, or available for use,—
(a) by an employee or contractor of the owner of the fitting or appliance; or
(b) by a hirer or lessee under a hire or lease agreement with the owner of the fitting or appliance; or
(c) by the occupier of premises that are rented or leased from the owner of the fitting or appliance.
(2) A fitting or appliance described in subclause (1)(a) is deemed to be electrically safe if it has a current tag issued in accordance with AS/NZS 3760.
The government's Worksafe website references electrical testing and tagging regimes in the electricity section.
Test & tag regime:
Testing and tagging electrical appliances is one useful way to check electrical equipment is safe.
However, it's not mandatory. What is legally required is that equipment is electrically safe and maintained in a safe condition.
Testing and tagging doesn't guarantee future electrical safety, what it does is provide a snapshot of how safe the appliance is at the time of testing.
It is up to the person conducting the business or undertaking (PCBU) to decide whether to test and tag.
View Regulation 26 of the Electrical (Safety) Regulations 2010 on the New Zealand Legislation website.
The in-service testing standard AS/NZS 3760 is a part of a safety program to help ensure the safety of persons using electrical equipment in the workplace. The Standard AS/NZS 3760 specifies in-service safety inspection and testing protocols and criteria that satisfy these obligations, and provides a cost-effective approach to safety without jeopardizing personnel safety or involving excessive equipment downtime.
The ministry of Education states the following in relation to electrical testing and tagging in schools as part of a schools overall risk management plan:
"Most electrical equipment at your school must be tested. This reduces the risk to people using the equipment. It must be tested by someone trained to do it, and it must be tested with proper testing equipment. As a board of trustees, testing electrical equipment is part of your legal obligations."
Meeting your health and safety responsibilities:
Making sure your electrical equipment is operating safely is part of your overall health and safety responsibilities. We recommend you review your school’s health and safety systems against the 11 key components of an effective health and safety system. This will help you meet the requirements of the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015.
New Zealand Standard AS/NZS 3760:2010 sets out all the requirements for:
- testing equipment
- tagging appliances once they’ve been tested
- recording test results over the life of the appliance.
You can buy a copy of the standard from the Standards New Zealand website.
If you comply with this Standard, WorkSafe New Zealand is likely to be satisfied that you have done everything you can to provide electrical equipment for a safe work place. If you don’t comply, and someone is harmed, you could be prosecuted.
You also need to make sure electrical equipment is safe under these pieces of legislation.
On top of the HSE Act and Regulations and the Electricity Act and Regulations, references to testing and tagging can also be found in the documents below:
Guidelines for the provision of facilities and general safety and health in Commercial and Industrial Premises (to meet the requirements of the Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992 and Regulations 1995):
Portable electric equipment:
Where any portable electric power-driven equipment is provided, the employer should ensure that all such equipment:Conforms to the requirements of the Electricity Act 1992 and Regulations unless the supply authority otherwise approves
Guidelines for the provision of facilities and general safety and health in the Construction Industry (to meet the requirements of the Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992 and Regulations 1995):
Inspection of Equipment:
All electrical tools and equipment should be inspected prior to their first use and thereafter at least at 3-monthly intervals. Inspection and testing to AS/NZS 3760 will ensure appropriate tests and inspections are carried out and that records are kept for use in future if required.
This guide provides information about electrical supply and safety on small construction sites. It is for a person conducting a business or undertaking (PCBU) who manages or controls a small construction site.
Along with the reference to a test and tag program there is also a great deal of practical advise and information to keep you, your staff, contractors and visitors safe while on site.
Ministry of Education Property Handbook:
On top of the HSE Act & Regulations and the Electricity Act and Regulations, the MoE school property management handbook section 7.7 states:
“Boards have a responsibility to ensure that electrical equipment is installed, maintained and used safely as required by the Integrated Electricity Regulations 1997/2004” And
“AS/NZS 3760:2003 In-service safety inspection and testing of electrical equipment describes a minimum standard regime for testing electrical equipment” And
“Following the regime provides Boards with a defence in the event of an accident involving electrical equipment”