Comment sought for tough new regulations

15 March, 2017

Public comment is open on proposed tougher regulations for workers performing live electrical work and working in roof spaces following several tragic deaths.

EnergySafety has been developing the new regulations, which are aimed at preventing further accidents.

The first of the proposed changes seek to establish a general prohibition on performing electrical work on or near an energised electrical installation. 

Exemptions could apply where a competent person has determined there is no reasonable alternative to carrying out the work; the risk can be reduced as low as reasonably practicable; and the work can be carried out safely. 

The second change is aimed at employees required to access residential building roof spaces.

Under the proposed regulations electricity to the building must be turned off at the mains, or otherwise isolated, before an employee can access the roof space. 

The restriction is not intended to apply to work performed on commercial application buildings but it will apply to buildings originally designed for residential purposes but have been converted into commercial buildings.

It would apply to a broader range of businesses including those involved in pest control, plumbing, telecommunication, security installation, air conditioning and insulation installation. 

Like the live electrical work regulations, limited exceptions could be issued where no reasonable alternative for the work exists.