So it was a year ago (near enough) that I took my C&G NA7909 course so I thought I’d use this as a reason to share a few observations I’ve had since then.
The first one was just a week ago, when I was doing the final testing on some power I was running in for an event, when the stall holder I was near asked me what I was doing. After explaining to her I was just testing the supply before letting her use it, her question was why? She explained she’d never seen or heard of anyone doing this at any of the events she’d been a trader at before and was curious as to who asked me to do this. She was suitably shocked when I explained it was a method of complying with the law by following BS7909. Now I know this could be as the testing is always done before the traders arrive but interesting that she’d never seen or heard about it before.
Another interesting moment was when performing a site visit before a small power job and asking about the protection on a 63 amp socket. The venue were very protective of their distribution board and eventually let me have a look but couldn’t explain why the variable MCB had been set to 48 amps, luckily enough for us! They also turned out to have a faulty RCD over the socket, all of our distro has individual RCBO’s so everyone was still protected. But equally they asked for a sign off but wanted it before we’d installed anything, which says to me they didn’t actually know what they were after, as how could I test and sign something off before I’d done it!
We’ve only been asked by two clients for an electrical sign off, one of which was for the venue just mentioned, so I’d actually count that as one, as the other did know what they were asking for! It shows (in my opinion) a bit of a lack of awareness of the law, as I’m sure people aren’t just ignoring it (well the majority at least), they’re simply unaware. Now I’m not saying that’s an excuse, I think it’s actually a common problem with a lot of laws and regulations, people are simply unaware because they’re so much we need to comply with. If you’re hoping I’ve got the answer for this problem then I’m afraid you’re wrong!
So, while we’re not being asked for it, we strive to lead the way with ensuring our jobs are electrically safe and signed off, hopefully something that we’ll see more and more people joining us to do!