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Posted on: 31 August 2018
Part III (regulations 17 to 28) of the EAWR only apply to mines, so are not discussed within this page.

With the aim of preventing deaths and injuries, the EAWR put into law the need for high standards of electrical safety.

Complying with the duties it imposes should mean that all practicable precautions are taken to prevent and limit health, safety and fire dangers in the workplace and/or as a consequence of work-related activities.

All employers and self-employed individuals must do all that is within their control to ensure that electrical risks in the workplace and/or related to work activities are appropriately managed.

Employees must co-operate with their employer’s efforts to fulfil regulatory duties and ensure that they don’t create or ignore danger (to themselves, as well as others).

There are 13 regulations under Part II of the EAWR (regulations 4 to 16) that all duty holders are required to comply with:
All electrical systems must be maintained to minimise the risk of injuries and fires and those that work with or around electrical equipment must be provided with suitable protective equipment (e.g. rubber-soled boots) and use it properly.
Equipment shouldn’t be used for tasks that are beyond its strength and capability as this can cause dangerous situations to arise. Care must therefore be taken in the selection of work equipment and employees trained to use it safely.
Appropriate precautions, such as coverings made of insulating materials, must be taken to prevent danger arising from conductors within an electrical system.

Earthing is a safety measure that involves transferring electrical energy to the ground. Suitable methods of earthing, or appropriate alternatives, should be installed to prevent the risk of injuries, power surges and fires.

The conductors and connections in all electrical and earthing systems must be suitable and maintained as necessary to prevent danger.

There must be measures that allow for the electrical supply to be cut off or isolated if there is a risk of danger arising (making the equipment ‘dead’). Precautions must then be taken to prevent the equipment becoming electrically charged during repairs, maintenance or while a risk persists.
Nobody should work on or near a live conductor that poses a danger. The only exceptions are where, in the circumstances, it’s not at all possible for the system to be made dead, the reasoning for the work is sound and suitable precautions (such as personal protective equipment) are taken to prevent injury.
When work is being carried out on electrical equipment, there must be sufficient room and lighting and a safe means of access for the worker. For example, if the work is to be done at height, then it might be appropriate to provide a fall-arrest system.
Individuals working on electrical systems must have suitable technical knowledge and experience or be appropriately supervised. Checks should be made to ensure that competency applies to the specific system being worked on and the environment where it’s installed or to be used.