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Legal Requirements

The law requires that all business owners, their directors, managers and employees comply with "The Electricity at Work Regulations".

The law simply requires that all electrical systems must be maintained to be safe at all times.

No system or part of it may give rise to danger during either normal operation or under fault conditions.

Regulation 4(2)
"All systems to be maintained so as to prevent, so far as is reasonably practicable, danger". "System" means the wiring of an electrical installation and everything connected to it.

Regulation (29) states:
"It shall be a defence for any person to prove that he took all reasonable steps and exercised all due diligence to avoid the commission of that offence"

Test reports, together with other preventative maintenance documentation will form the basis of this proof and will provide your best defence against prosecution should the need arise.

Duty holders are responsible for setting up adequate maintenance programmes and must assess the needs and frequency requirement of testing, maintaining and monitoring electrical systems and equipment. Generally, the following test intervals may be applied for guidance purposes: -

Electrical installations
(As outlined in 16th Edition I.E.E. regulations)

Type of Installation Maximum period between inspections
Churches (over 5 years old)
Places of public entertainment
Petroleum stations
Emergency lighting & Fire alarms
10 years
5 years
3 years
1 year
1 year
1 year
1 year


Portable Appliances

Environment Frequency
Industrial / Workshops
Commercial (normal & class I)
Commercial (low risk & class II)
6 months
12 months
24 months or more



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