It is law, it keeps you safe and it keeps your business compliant. Regulations have been put in place to ensure all staff are safe in their workplace. An electrical accident in the workplace that is the result of the employer not following test and tag requirements can cost the business a lot of money.
When to Test And Tag
In Queensland, in an office environment where equipment is often used constantly, the equipment is required to be tested every 5 years. This includes computers and monitors. People often think testing and tagging only relates to industrial or factory situations. This is not the case. All places of work are required to have a qualified electrician carry out testing and tagging.
While an office environment may only need testing every 5 years, a commercial kitchen, where there is specialised equipment, needs to have electrical testing carried out every 12 months. In the construction industry some equipment needs to be tested every six months and safety switches are required to be tested monthly.
It is the business owners responsibility to ensure that this process is carried out within the correct time frame. Different types of equipment have different testing intervals. An established electrical contractor will be able to set up an automated schedule for testing and tagging of your equipment, so you won’t have to worry about when you are next required to test and tag particular pieces of equipment.
Here is a snapshot of testing intervals required by the Queensland Government
- 6 months: factories, warehouses and production – this type of an environment isn’t considered as harsh, but because appliances are often used constantly it needs to be tested every 6 months.
- 12 months: an environment where the equipment/supply cord is prone to flexing or open to abuse – this is often referred to as a hostile environment as the appliance can be overused and is therefore exposed to abuse by the user, as well as dust, general deterioration and the weather.
Who Can Test and Tag?
In Queensland only a person appointed as competent by their employer can test and tag electrical equipment. A competent person is one who has training, experience and qualifications. Always ask to see your electricians electrical license as it is an offence under the Electrical Safety Act 2002 to repair electrical equipment unless you have the appropriate licence.
What is included in a standard test and tag service?
A profession electrical test and tag company will:
- Carry out compliance test
- Visual inspections
- Insulation resistance testing
- Earth continuity/leakage testing
- Attach a durable tag after the inspection
- Document the process
- Provide the business owner with a comprehensive report and set up a schedule for the next test and tag period.
This information relates to Queendland and if you require testing and tagging elsewhere in Australia we strongly recommend that you visit the Government website for your state.