What are the benefits of PAT testing?
Getting your appliances tested has many benefits, the biggest one being ‘saving lives’. However for most workplaces the biggest benefit of PAT testing is it ticks the box to say you’re doing what you can to ensure the electrical equipment you provide is safe to use, and thus meeting your obligations for health and safety at work.
Approximately 15% of all domestic fires in England and Wales are caused by electrical faults, with electrical appliance breakdowns and broken cables among the leading causes. The average year sees almost 8,000 electrical fires in the UK alone, with nearly 4,000 injuries and more than 30 deaths.
Will these shocking figures compel you to get your electrical system checked out?
Reducing these numbers is a benefit of PAT testing – the main reason for getting electrical equipment tested these days is to reduce the chances of an appliance starting a fire.
7 of the best benefits of PAT Testing
- PAT tests reduce the likelihood of an appliance catching fire
- PAT tests ensuring electrical appliances provided to tenants in rental property are safe*
- PAT tests reduce the chances of a fire in the workplace
- Regular PAT tests can save you money in the long term
- Regular PAT tests can reduce the risk appliances pose to your business
- Risk appropriate testing helps you comply with UK regulations
- Regular PAT tests keep your insurance company happy
*Landlords are not currently required to carry out formal electrical testing, although they do have a legal obligation to ensure that electrical appliances provided to tenants in their properties are safe, or at least carry the CE mark.
In the UK electrical fires account for around 33% of accidental fires in the workplace. These fires can be due to electrical faults or misuse of electrical equipment. A rise in these fires is seen during the Christmas period. By law, employers should make sure equipment is installed, maintained and used correctly, whether it is owned or leased by the business.
Regular PAT tests reduce the chance of fires
Electrical fires from faulty or counterfeit equipment are frequent in the UK, and the most important reason for getting equipment tested. A good PAT tester knows what to look for and will reduce the chances of your equipment starting a fire.
Electrical appliances carry electricity from the mains power supply via the plug and flexible cable into the appliance, which makes it work so you can use it.
- If there is a fault somewhere in that route there is a probability that that is going to lead to an accident, possibly a shock to the user, referred to as an ‘electric shock’.
- If that shock proves to be fatal then the person will have been electrocuted.
- If the person is electrocuted then they are dead; and that will not be a pleasant way to die.
- Users of electrical equipment often do so without even considering the consequences of touching a faulty appliance, but when they do the results are shocking.
- Good maintenance can make sure appliances don’t get into a state of poor repair.
- Portable appliance testing will check the full length of the appliance to the plug for any faults and from which they will be dealt with.
- Thus removing the risk of an electric shock.
When we do your PAT Testing, the benefits to you include:
- Free replacement plugs and fuses
- Free repairs
- Certificates issued promptly
- Reminders for retests
- No money wasted on unnecessary testing
You’ll find that most people don’t see this benefit until it happens, but regular PAT testing can save you money long term – it’s cheaper than a maintenance contract, and definitely cheaper than legal action if an accident occurs, and you haven’t checked equipment is safe.
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This is the biggest benefit of PAT testing.
Most people don’t understand the reasons why PAT gets done, and for their part they won’t appreciate the benefit of PAT testing until it’s too late.
PAT testing is important, despite what some people seem to think; PAT testing finds faults in electrical appliances that may otherwise not be detected until after they have killed someone or destroyed a business’s property through fire.
PAT testing is carried out on electrical appliances, just like the an inspection is carried out on the wiring installation – both are important, for similar reasons – a fault leads to electric shock; which you don’t want.
In worse case scenarios, that electric shock becomes electrocution. If you get electrocuted you die, and what makes it worse is, your death will be a very painful one.
Regular testing reduces the risks
Portable appliance testing; when correctly performed will reduce and all but eliminate the risk of electrocution and/or fire which is a benefit of pat testing. There can’t ever be a 100% guarantee but compared with doing nothing at all the chances of ensuring safety are dramatically increased – How much would your business lose if it was affected by fire? When we say there can’t be a 100% guarantee, it’s because we can’t stop an appliance being damaged after we test it, but at the time of testing we do guarantee its safety.
Regular PAT Testing reduces the chance of accidents
Accidents as a result of faulty electrics are 20 times more likely to kill their victim than any other type of accident – PAT Testing finds faults that lead to electrocution; and removes them.
There’s a lot said about PAT testing frequency, especially how long you can get away with between tests. If you really want to ensure that the chances of an accident are as low as possible then you need to get appliances tested more often. It’s no surprise that workplaces that get annual tests have the lowest percentages of repairs, failures and incidents.
Appliance testing helps you comply with the law
- The Electricity at Work Regulations (EAW)
- Provisions & Use of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER)
- Health & Safety at Work Act
- Management of Health & Safety at Work Regulations
- Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations
PAT testing helps with insurance
Insurance companies expect you to comply with Health and Safety; if you’re not maintaining your electrical appliances to a satisfactory level, and can’t prove your appliances are safe – your insurer may deem you policy as void. This is a benefit of PAT testing.
When a claim is made in regard to any electrical accident involving portable appliances without the appropriate PAT Testing Certificate, Insurance companies may decline any claim.
Most insurance companies expect you to get electrical appliances checked annually.