Jakes Property Services

New Electrical Regs Set To Save Lives

Date: 18 March 2009

With around 10 deaths and 750 injuries per year attributed to domestic electrical accidents, the pressure placed upon the government to introduce new regulations around electrical installations has finally made a telling impact. As from the 1st of January 2005, directors of management company�s and managing agents will be required to comply with the addition of Part P to Building Regulations. This addition will mean all electrical fixed installations in common parts of buildings must comply with regulation BS 7671. By passing this new legislation, the government envisage an increase in the level of safety within the residential sector. In its simplest form, Part P can be broken down into two sections. The first section will consider Design, Installation, Inspection and Testing. This will aim to ensure reasonable provision is made in the design, installation, inspection and testing of electrical installations in order to protect persons from fire or injury. With personal safety being so closely scrutinized, residential management companies are now obliged to seek a competent electrician to install, test and maintain even the simplest of communal light fittings. The second section will be concerned with Provision Information and requires sufficient information to be provided to those operating, maintaining or altering electrical installations. This may come in the form of diagrams or charts and is something managing agents are recommending becomes standard practice across their entire client portfolio. Although it may appear difficult and somewhat costly, Part P requires proof that all electrical works are in accordance with national safety standards. This can be achieved through certification by a building control body or via self-certification by a competent electrician. Failure to comply with the new legislation could be even more costly as it may lead to a £5,000 fine. The National Inspection Council for Electrical Installation Contracting, an independent regulatory board, considers themselves a key representative in ensuring Part P is correctly observed. Their NICEIC approved contractor scheme currently includes around 12,000 members who can issue certificates and are considered competent enough to make judgements on electrical safety. With a scheme like this in place, residents, landlords and managing agents can now begin to feel safer in the knowledge that the days of "cowboy" traders could be coming to an end and a new era of electrical safety is starting to emerge. For more information on Part P please contact the NICIEC on 0800 013 0900 or alternatively, click on the following link. back »