SafeWork NSW conducts campaign to reduce risky electrical work

Thursday, 12 November, 2020

SafeWork NSW conducts campaign to reduce risky electrical work

A NSW Government compliance campaign will target electrical safety issues on construction sites, to ensure electricians are operating safely. From 9 November 2020 to 30 December 2020, SafeWork NSW inspectors will conduct drop-in inspections across a range of sites to check they have the right controls in place to manage electrical risks.

Minister for Better Regulation Kevin Anderson said the campaign is part of SafeWork NSW’s mission to eradicate serious and potentially fatal injuries in the industry.

“Electrical work is complex and must always be done by a licensed professional, regardless of the cost and whether the work is residential, commercial or industrial. Our inspectors will be turning up on sites across the state to make sure all the right measures are in place to protect both the sparkies and those working with them,” said Anderson.

Inspectors will focus on ensuring workers maintain proper appropriate distances from overhead powerlines and implementing the required safety controls in accordance with the energy provider. Inspectors will also check that temporary wiring meets the correct standards, that other electrical tools (such as power tools and RCD boards) are managed correctly, and that those doing electrical work are appropriately licensed.

Alongside providing education on best practices, inspectors will have the power to issue improvement, prohibition and penalty notices against those doing the wrong thing.

Since 2017, SafeWork NSW has investigated 34 serious electrical incidents, with seven being fatalities. Anderson noted that the primary causes of these incidents were contact with overhead powerlines and unsafe or aged wiring.

“If you see anything dodgy on site, take a picture and send it directly to SafeWork for follow up via our app Speak up, Save Lives,” said Anderson.

Image credit: © Popov

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