PAT Testing during the January 2021 Lockdown

Lockdown 2021 Coronavirus Information

Guidance Note 01/2021

Guidance Note for PATTA Members, Duty Holders and the Public

 PATTA is the trade organisation for PAT Testing Companies in the UK and we represent the interests of all of our members and others in the PAT Testing Industry.

PATTA members might be wondering whether or not it is possible for them to continue working during the current lockdown. The view of PATTA is that, at the current time, PAT testing engineers should still continue to work, provided that their clients wish them to do so and that they can comply with all necessary hygiene and social distancing processes.

The guidelines from the UK government make it clear that people should still go to work if they cannot work from home. The guidance also allows for essential maintenance, repair and health and safety tasks to be carried out. Where businesses are continuing, such as in manufacturing or distribution, then the risk of electric shock from faulty appliances remains the same as ever, and essential maintenance tasks such as Portable Appliance Testing should not be neglected.

In some cases, especially in the healthcare sector, where organisations are stretched, the risk of electric shock can be increased due to the hectic nature of the workplace. There is also a risk of injury or fire from equipment in office based businesses which has been taken home and then back to the office; either through being moved, or set up without proper consideration of overloading sockets etc. Businesses may also want to consider whether equipment which is in employees’ homes may need to be checked, especially if it has been some time since it was taken home.

Obviously, PAT Testing engineers should carry out a full risk assessment before undertaking work on their client’s premises, and this should include the latest government guidance concerning distancing, wearing of facemasks, using hand sanitiser and wipes, as well as taking on board guidance such as ‘hands, face, space.’ PATTA members are encouraged to liaise carefully with their clients and to consult the website for the latest guidance to make sure that their visits are conducted as safely as possible.

If visits cannot be completed safely then it may be necessary to postpone the PAT testing to a later date, although Duty Holders should be careful to make sure that they do not cause other issues (such as invalidating their business insurance) if the PAT testing is not carried out in a timely manner.

For more information please speak to your local PAT Testing Company or contact us.