WA Electrical Safety Code of Practice changes – SOS Talk (B)

Imminent legislative changes to electrical safety in Western Australia are about to come into effect! Do you know about them or are you ready? Changes are being made in the; Electrical (Licensing) Regulation of WA 1991, The Code of Practice to: Working on or near Energized Electrical Installations and amendments to the Occupational Safety and Health Regulations 1996.

The changes come into effect the 14th of May 2018, they are due to several factors:

  • Since 2008 when a code of practice was released there has been no improvement in incident or injury rates.
  • Far too many serious shocks, arc-flash incidents and electrocutions involve electricians doing work on energised installations are still occurring.
  • Lessons from recent investigations / fatalities and ‘safety reminders’ are appearing to being ignored.
  • Evidence of electrical workers/contractors cutting corners trends have been identified.

amendments to the Code of Practice for Working on or Near Energised Electrical Installations are being introduced. They provide more detailed information about R.55 compliance but also:

  • The Code applies to all work on electrical equipment operating at low but not to ELV or work on the four network operators’ distribution networks
  • Clause 3 of the Code provides information about the persons collectively responsible for ensuring electrical work is carried out under de-energised conditions in all circumstances except as permitted by R.55
  • Those persons are essentially the duty holders described in the Occupational Safety and Health Regulations 1996
  • The Code includes a SWMS template sample
  • If you are using your own SWMS design for the OSHR you can continue to use it to satisfy both purposes.
  • Some adjustment might be necessary for specific electrical work tasks and sites

It is important to note that; Code compliance may be achieved by following another method utilising sound risk management practice if the alternative provides an equivalent or superior standard of electrical safety.

So, you need to ask yourselves Why is there a need to work ‘Live’ anymore…..

Thanks to EnergySafe WA for allowing us to share this information.

SOS-Switched Onto Safety

May 2018

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