John Blackburn provides some insights into the retest intervals you need to apply to your appliances when having them tested and tagged.
Today, I want to talk to you about one area of Test and Tagging that creates a lot of controversy because there’s a lot of misinformation and a lot of misunderstanding about it. And that’s the Retest Intervals.
I’m often asked by clients: “What are the correct Retest Intervals that are applicable for the appliances in my work place?” Well, unfortunately, it’s not always cut and dry.
The Standard AS/NZS 3760, actually sets out some indicative retest intervals; it identifies seven areas. Those areas are based on what we call the environment, and the more hostile the environment the more frequently the appliance needs to be retested.
A hostile environment is one where the expected life span of the appliance would be reduced due to factors such as dust, humidity, changes of temperature, corrosion and even physical abuse. Yes people do abuse their appliances. The more hostile the environment the more frequently it needs to be retested.
It identifies as a starting point six monthly intervals and that would be for areas such as factories, workshops, places of manufacture, et cetera.
In another environment where it’s still a bit hostile but the appliance isn’t subject to quite as much abuse, then there’s twelve months intervals and then it goes all way up to five years where there the lead isn’t being flexed, the appliance isn’t moved around, it’s not a hostile environment. That might be like in an office where it’s a controlled environment, dust free, et cetera.
The standard also talks about contract cleaning equipment, appliances in residental areas of hotels, boarding houses et cetera, and even hire equipment, but let’s not get too far into that.
You don’t have to follow those strictly ; you can vary them and customize them according to your workplace and it would be highly recommended that you do that subject to a formal risk assessment.
If you’d like some more information on that because I know probably doesn’t answer your specific question, give us a call and we can help you. It’s not too hard when we look at it but you do need to get it right because if you don’t get it right then it might be exposing your people to unnecessary risk of electric shock and we don’t want that do we because then they’re not protected and neither is your business.
If you’d like some more information, visit us at Acme Test and Tagging or give me a call.
This information is general in nature, should be used as a guide only and read in conjunction with the relevant Standard(s), State and/or Federal Legislation, Codes of Practice and Industry Standards specific to your workplace. A proper risk assessment should be under taken before acting on the information provided in this document or any related material. Further information can also be obtained from your local Workplace Authority, Electrical Safety Authority or a suitably qualified persons.
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John has been working in the testing and tagging industry since 2007 when he founded ACME Test and Tagging. He has written several courses on testing and tagging and is the founder of Test And Tag Standards Australia that specialises in test and tag courses.
Recognised as an expert in his industry, John runs a blog on testing and tagging and has had articles published in Safety Snippets magazine.