TAGS

To test or not to test

What are the laws around test and tagging?

Look anywhere on the internet and there are personal opinions and advice from experts and non experts alike.

If you are in business and someone has said you need to test and tag, your first thought is probably along the lines of, really? whats that?
The next thought is most likely, How much will it cost me? - or, That will cost me too much, maybe next year.
Some business owners are likely to go to the internet to find out more details, others will ask their contracted Workplace Safety adviser. To be honest the real answer is not as clear as you would expect.

Test and Tagging is not mandatory. What is mandatory though, is that equipment is electrically safe and maintained in a safe condition and according to the Workplace Safety legislation, "Cost is not to be a factor". Testing and tagging doesn't guarantee future electrical safety, what it does is provide a snapshot of how safe the appliance is at the time of testing.
Think of it like a WOF for your electrical appliances.
If you can guarantee that your appliances are safe, you only need to prove it. The problem is, unless you can prove that you are competent in checking your appliances are safe, you are taking a massive life and financial risk.

There are a range of people who can T&T. From your local electrician to the new guy who started in your place of work last month. The trick, if you can call it that, is to have someone who has the experience in knowing what to look for to keep you and your employees or fellow employees safe.

In past comments, I have shown many reasons to employ a specialist in this area. If you contract an electrician, make sure that if they charge an hourly rate, many of whom charge in excess of $120 per hour, they can test at least 15-17 items an hour on average. Maybe even get it as a firm quote.
If they charge by the tag, you should also check that there are no other hidden costs like travel, call out fee, report cost or any other add on that could be there. 
On the flip side, you don't want to be contracting your safety out to someone who just ticks the boxes for $3.00 per tag either. 
The next thing to consider is, if there are appliances that are failed, can the person testing repair it? The last thing you need is for an important piece of equipment to fail, then wait for a week to have it repaired before you can use it again.

The images below are some actual fails that I found while testing. The owners who are intelligent people, thought they were OK to use. Unless you are properly trained, are you sure you are safe??