CODE OF PRACTICE

ELECTRICAL WORK ELECTRICAL SAFETY ACT 2002

ELECTRICAL SAFETY OFFICE

Queensland Government
Department of Industrial Relations

TA B L E O F C O N T E N T S

TABLE OF CONTENTS
1 Introduction ....................................................................5
1.1 Important dates ...........................................................................5 1.2 What is a Code of Practice? .......................................................5 1.3 What is this Code about? ............................................................5 1.3.1 This Code includes .............................................................5 1.3.2 This Code does not include ...............................................6 1.4 How is this Code set out?.............................................................7 1.5 What is “electrical work”? ...........................................................7 1.6 Obligations under the “Electrical Safety Act 2002” ...................7 1.7 How can I meet my obligations? ................................................8 1.8 Defences for failing to meet your electrical safety obligation ..........................................................................8 1.9 Penalty for failure to meet your electrical safety obligation .....9

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The Electrical Safety Act 2002 .........................................9
2.1 Electricity entities .........................................................................9 2.2 Obligation of employer or self-employed person ....................10 2.3 Designer of electrical equipment and electrical installations .................................................................................10 2.4 Manufacturer of electrical equipment .....................................10 2.5 Importer of electrical equipment ..............................................11 2.6 Supplier of electrical equipment...............................................11 2.7 Repairer or installer of electrical installations or electrical equipment ..................................................................................11 2.8 Person in control of electrical equipment ................................12 2.9 Workers........................................................................................12 2.10 Obligations of other person .......................................................12 2.11 Requirement for electrical work licence...................................13

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The Electrical Safety Regulation 2002 ...........................14
3.1 Part 2 – Electrical work ...............................................................14 3.1.1 Division 1 – Preliminary......................................................14 3.1.2 Division 2 – Basic requirements for electrical work .........14 3.1.3 Division 4 – Testing of work ...............................................17

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TA B L E O F C O N T E N T S
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3.1.4 Division 5 – Requirements applying to employers and self-employed persons .....................................................18 3.1.5 Division 6 – Other requirements .......................................20 3.1.6 Division 7 – Documents about electrical work ................21 3.1.7 Division 8 – General provisions .........................................22 3.2 Part 4 – Working around electrical parts ...................................23 3.2.1 Division 1 – Preliminary......................................................23 3.2.2 Division 2 – Requirements for working around electrical parts..................................................................27 3.2.3 Division 3 – Consultation with persons in control of electrical lines ..............................................................29 3.3 Part 5 – Electrical Installations....................................................31 3.3.1 Division 1 – Performing Electrical Work ............................31 3.3.2 Division 5 – Workplace electrical installations .................32 3.4 Part 8 – Electricity Supply ...........................................................32 3.4.1 Division 1 – Connection to source of electricity .............32 3.4.2 Division 3 – Testing ............................................................33 3.5 Part 12 – Incident notification and reporting............................33 3.6 Part 13 – Miscellaneous provisions.............................................34 3.6.1 Division 3 – Other matters.................................................34 3.7 Schedule 2 – Exclusion zones for electrical parts .....................36 3.7.1 Part 1 – exclusion zones for exposed parts for untrained persons and for operating plant and vehicles operated by untrained persons.......................................36 3.7.2 Part 2 – exclusion zones for exposed parts for authorised and instructed persons and for operating plant and vehicles operated by authorised or instructed persons ............................................................38 3.7.3 Part 3 – Exclusion zones for low voltage overhead insulated electric line for untrained persons and for operating plant or vehicles operated by untrained persons.............................................................40 3.7.4 Part 4 – Exclusion zones for low voltage overhead insulated electric line for authorised or instructed persons and for operating plant or vehicles operated by authorised or instructed persons ................................41

............4.........3 Important issues when working live ...........................................................3....46 4.57 6........59 3 ..............................................................43 4 Risk management ....3................................1 Electrical hazards and causes of injury .....................................................48 5............3 General......................1 Documentation .....48 5...2 High voltage isolation and access system ............................................57 6......7................................................54 5.........4...............1 General ..........................4 Altering isolation for testing..............................2 Hazards and risks ............................................1 General....1 Scope................4 Low voltage isolation and access.............. fault finding and energising ......1 Scope........................................53 5..................3 Work position .................58 6...3 Proving de-energised ............3 The risk management process ...........................54 5...................................7.......................44 4..........................................................................3....................................51 5......46 5 Working de-energised.......55 6 Working live ....................5.................................................................6 Part 6 – Exclusion zones for high voltage overhead insulated electric line for authorised and instructed persons and for operating plant and vehicles operated by authorised or instructed persons .........48 5........57 6...42 3...................................5.48 5...................................................4...........................................TA B L E O F C O N T E N T S 3................................57 6.......................2 Regulatory requirement ...........................................2 Conductive materials.....2 Regulatory requirement ..........................................................1 De-energising and re-energising .....................................44 4......44 4...................................4.........4 Common electrical hazards ...........50 5.57 6..................5 Part 5 – Exclusion zones for high voltage overhead insulated electric line for untrained persons and for operating plant or vehicles operated by untrained persons.......................49 5...............................................................................................................5 High voltage isolation and access .2 Isolating and disconnecting ...................49 5..........................................................................44 4........................4.

..........102 Tagging out of service...............................85 1...... testing.......113 Other electrical hazards to be addressed.........4....3 1.................. instruments and equipment used for electrical work ........TA B L E O F C O N T E N T S 4 6....................109 Excavation near energised cables.....................2 2...........................7 Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) ......... chainsaws and electrical workers .. scaffolds..85 Tripping of supply on powerlines ............4 Safety observer (electrical) ..60 6..93 Working on or from poles and towers.......................................................62 6..1 General .........................4..................6 Safety barriers and signs ................5 2........................4 Instruments and test devices ..........................................................91 Working with ladders....................................................65 6..........4................................112 General elements of a safe system of work........................3..4 2.....................2 Selection... maintenance etc...............91 ....2 Ensuring correct connections (including polarity)..............110 Vegetation management....................66 6........................5 2 2..68 Appendix A – Meaning Of Terms Used In This Code ..........3.........5 Testing and fault-finding – proving the work is safe.....................61 6................89 Working in and around trenches... portable pole platforms and scaffolds..........2 1.........5.....................................4.........................3 Use of instruments and test devices .......................................................1 2...........85 1 Common sources of electrical hazards ...................................... portable pole platforms ...................................6 2..87 Working in unsafe atmospheres...1 1.................4 1.................3.....65 6.......... .............62 6................66 6..62 6............................. pits and underground ducts .........66 6...................61 6..........5 Ladders.87 Working near sources of arcing........92 Working with elevating work platforms (EWP)......4.....5.................111 Use of tools..................8 3 Identifying sources of electric shock .5 Emergency planning ........88 Isolation and access ..........................................64 6..71 Appendix B – Further information ..........................................................1 General ......... explosion or fires............4 What to use to work safely – tools..........................................3................................................3 2.............7 2........

2002 ✱ Commences on 22 November. directly or indirectly.3. 1 2 3 The term “electrical work” is defined in Appendix A.3 What is this Code about? The Code gives benchmarks for performing electrical work1 in ways that are electrically safe 2 . ✱ Employers and self-employed electrical workers.1 Impor tant dates This Code of Practice: ✱ Was made on 15 November. INTRODUCTION 1.1 This Code includes This Code applies to: ✱ Electrical workers. 2007 1. INTRODUCTION 1. 5 . 2002 ✱ Expires on 21 November. It gives practical advice on ways to discharge electrical safety obligations.2 What is a Code of Practice? A Code of Practice is a document made under the Electrical Safety Act 2002 (the Act). and ✱ Electrical contractors. 1. no guidance on other risks is provided. The Code provides guidance on managing electrical risk3 only.1. by electricity. 1. The term “electrical risk” is defined in Appendix A. The Code has been designed to reflect the two ways to per for m electrical work – working de-energised and working live. The term “electrically safe” is defined in Appendix A. Included in a Code are ways to identify and manage exposure to risks of injury and property damage caused.

High voltage live line workers are subject to this Code for electrical work activities while not performing high voltage live line work. • Standards Australia. Practical guidance provided in the “Code of Practice for Working Near Exposed Live Parts” 5 may be relevant to electrical workers when they are performing work on either live or de-energised6 parts. Switching to provide electrical access is part of this Code.gov. Apart from correct connections (including polarity) this Code does not address the inspection and test procedures detailed in section 6 of AS/NZS 30007.2 This Code does not include Approved work performed under a high voltage live line management plan. and Licensed electrical mechanics. and • Relevant industry associations.au.1. This information may be obtained via the internet at – www.qld. such as preventing falls from heights. Further information on inspection and testing be obtained from codes and standards produced by other sources including: • Manufactures and suppliers. • Electricity Supply Association of Australia.dir. Functional operations such as switching performed regularly to operate electrical equipment4 is not covered by this Code. This code does not cover general health and safety matters. is not covered by this Code. The term “de-energise” is defined in Appendix A. 1. The “Code of Practice for Working Near Exposed Live Parts” is a Code under the provisions of the “Electrical Safety Act 2002”. Licensed electrical linespersons. . Licensed electrical fitters. 4 5 6 7 The term “electrical equipment” is defined in Appendix A. INTRODUCTION 6 This Code focuses only on the electrical aspects of work performed by the following people: ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ Restricted electrical licence holders. Licensed jointers. Electrical work training permit holders.3. as prescribed in section 13 of the Electrical Safety Regulation 2002 (the Regulation). These requirements can be found in infor mation supplied by the Queensland Department of Industrial Relations – Division of Workplace Health and Safety.

7 . and ✱ The Appendices contain definitions and further guidelines on how to perform work that is electrically safe. For example. assessing the risk of injury or property damage that may be attributed to hazards and taking necessary actions to minimise exposure to the risk. an employer has an obligation to ensure their business or undertaking is conducted in a way this is electrically safe.5 What is “electrical work”? The definition of “electrical work” used in the Act is contained in Appendix A – Meaning Of Terms Used In This Code. and Standards Australia. Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency. An extract from the Act detailing the obligation holders relevant to this Code is included in section 2.4 How is this Code set out? The sections of the Code are: ✱ Sections One to Four outline general information about the Code. This includes identifying electrical hazards. Electricity Supply Association of Australia.6 Obligations under the “Electrical Safety Act 2002” The Act imposes obligations on persons who may affect the electrical safety of others by their acts or omissions. INTRODUCTION Information may also be found from sources including: ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ National Occupational Health and Safety Commission.1. 1. 1. ✱ Sections Five and Six provide guidance on working de-energised and working live. 1. the legislation and risk management.

or a mistaken belief. b. and Do not follow a way that is equally effective to. If a regulation is identified as prescribing a way of discharging your electrical safety obligation. In this instance. If a code of practice states a way of discharging your electrical safety obligation. you can provide a valid defence by establishing that the offence was due to causes beyond your control.1. you can seek to establish that you chose an appropriate way. took reasonable precautions and exercised proper diligence to discharge the safety obligation. there are three ways you can meet your electrical safety obligations – either through regulations. code of practice or ministerial notice that told you how to meet your electrical safety obligation under the circumstances. 1. Where there was no regulation. INTRODUCTION 8 1. ministerial notices or codes of practice. or more effective than. the code of practice for discharging your electrical safety obligation. you will fail to discharge your obligation in relation to the risk if you contravene the ministerial notice. If a ministerial notice prescribes a way of discharging an electrical safety obligation in relation to an electrical risk. . you cannot claim as a defence those sections of the Criminal Code relating to an accidental act or omission. you must comply in the following manner to meet your obligations: a. Refer also to section 4 of this code regarding the risk management process. Where applicable. you will fail to discharge your obligation if you: • • Contravene the code or act in a way inconsistent with the code. you will fail to discharge your obligation if you contravene the regulation. c.7 How can I meet my obligations? Under the Act.8 Defences for failing to meet your electrical safety obligation If charged with a breach of obligation.

supplier or person in control.2 . Without limitation.00) or 1 year imprisonment. tests and maintains the works. For example. this obligation includes requirements that the electricity entity inspects. Where the Workplace Health and Safety Act 1995 and the Electrical Safety Act 2002 both apply. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y AC T 2 0 0 2 1. the Electrical Safety Act 2002 takes precedence. THE ELECTRICAL SAFETY ACT 2002 The Act imposes electrical safety obligations on persons for the electrical safety of others. 2. ✱ If the breach causes bodily har m – 750 penalty units (currently $56 250. a corporation may have an obligation not only as a generation entity but also as an employer.1 Electricity entities The Act imposes an obligation on electricity entities to ensure that their works: ✱ are electrically safe. or ✱ Otherwise – 500 penalty units (currently $37 500. 9 .9 Penalty for failure to meet your electrical safety obligation The maximum penalty for failing to discharge an electrical safety obligation is: ✱ If the breach causes death or grievous bodily harm – 1000 penalty units (currently $75 000. and ✱ are operated in a way that is electrically safe.00) or 2 years imprisonment. A person can have an electrical safety obligation in more than one capacity.00) or 6 months imprisonment. 2.

2. it is accompanied by infor mation about how the electrical equipment or installation should be used to ensure that it is electrically safe. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y AC T 2 0 0 2 10 2. . ✱ A designer has an additional obligation to comply with an electrical safety notification issued by the chief executive that applies to the designer. is tested and examined to ensure it is electrically safe.4 Manufacturer of electrical equipment The Act imposes an obligation on manufacturers of electrical equipment to ensure that: ✱ the processes followed for manufacturing the electrical equipment ensure that the electrical equipment. and ✱ when the design leaves the designer. when made. when made. is electrically safe. will be electrically safe. and ✱ if the person’s business or undertaking includes electrical work. Without limitation. Without limitation. and ✱ the electrical equipment.3 Designer of electrical equipment and electrical installations The Act imposes an obligation on designers of electrical equipment or an electrical installation to ensure that: ✱ the electrical equipment or installation is designed to be electrically safe. when made.2 . this includes ensuring the electrical equipment. ensuring that all persons and property likely to be affected by the electrical work are electrically safe. this obligation includes: ✱ ensuring that all electrical equipment used in conducting the person’s business or undertaking is electrically safe.2 Obligation of employer or self-employed person The Act imposes an obligation on an employer and a self-employed person to ensure that his or her business or undertaking is conducted in an electrically safe way. 2.

2. is electrically safe.2 . A supplier has an additional obligation to comply with the requirements of an electrical safety notification issued by the chief executive that applies to the supplier.7 Repairer or installer of electrical installations or electrical equipment The Act imposes an obligation on repairers and installers of electrical equipment and electrical installations to ensure that: ✱ the way the electrical equipment or installation is installed or repaired is electrically safe. Without limitation. Without limitation.6 Supplier of electrical equipment The Act imposes an obligation on the suppliers of electrical equipment to ensure that when the equipment leaves the supplier.5 Impor ter of electrical equipment The Act imposes an obligation on an importer of electrical equipment to ensure that the electrical equipment is electrically safe. 11 . 2. this includes ensuring that the electrical equipment: ✱ is designed to be electrically safe. it is accompanied by infor mation about how the electrical equipment should be used to ensure electrically safe use. this includes ensuring that the electrical equipment or installation. and ✱ is tested and examined to ensure it is electrically safe. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y AC T 2 0 0 2 A manufacturer has an additional obligation to comply with an electrical safety notification issued by the chief executive that applies to the manufacturer. An importer has an additional obligation to comply with the requirements of an electrical safety notification issued by the chief executive that applies to the importer. 2. is tested and examined to ensure it is electrically safe. when installed or repaired. and ✱ the electrical equipment or installation. ✱ the processes followed for installing or repairing the electrical equipment or installation ensure that the electrical equipment or installation will be electrically safe.

9 Workers At a place where electrical equipment is located. where electrical equipment is located: ✱ to comply with electrical safety instructions given by the person in control of the electrical equipment.10 Obligations of other person The Act imposes an obligation on persons at a place. ✱ to use personal protective equipment. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y AC T 2 0 0 2 12 2. This obligation does not apply to a person in control of electrical equipment if the electrical equipment: ✱ is located at premises in which the person lives.8 Person in control of electrical equipment The Act imposes an obligation on a person in control of electrical equipment to ensure the electrical equipment is electrically safe. 2. . ✱ not to wilfully or recklessly interfere with or misuse anything provided for electrical safety at the place. if: • the equipment is provided by the worker’s employer or the person in control of the electrical equipment for electrical safety purposes. and to the extent the instructions are consistent with instructions given by the worker’s employer or by the person in control of the electrical equipment. ✱ not to wilfully place any person there at electrical risk. the Act imposes an obligation on a worker: ✱ to comply with instructions for the electrical safety of persons and property at the place given: • • by the worker’s employer. at the place in electrical risk.2 . 2. including the worker. or ✱ forms part of the works of an electricity entity. ✱ not to wilfully place any person. other than a worker. and • the worker is properly instructed in the use of the equipment provided. ✱ not to wilfully inter fere with or misuse anything provided for electrical safety at the place.

Only an individual may be the holder of an electrical work licence. as a trainee. of electrical work in a calling that requires the apprentice to perform electrical work. as an apprentice. Maximum penalty – 400 penalty units.11 Requirement for electrical work licence A person must not perform or supervise electrical work unless – ✱ the person is the holder of an electrical work licence in force under this Act. school or similar institution conducted or approved 13 . ✱ performance or supervision of remote rural installation work. ✱ per formance. ✱ performance or supervision of electrical work as part of the testing of electrical equipment that the person is authorised to do under a regulation. and ✱ the licence authorises the person to perform the work. as a student. A person is not required under the above subsection to hold an electrical work licence for the purpose of the following – ✱ per formance or supervision of electrical work for the purpose of installing or repairing telecommunications cabling. or by a department of the State or of the Commonwealth. of electrical work in a calling that requires the trainee to perform electrical work of a type prescribed under a regulation. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y AC T 2 0 0 2 2. of electrical work as part of training under the supervision of teaching staff at – (i) a university. ✱ performance. ✱ per for mance.2 . (ii) a college. ✱ per for mance or supervision of electrical work in practising the person’s profession as an electrical engineer.

the employer or selfemployed person must ensure that – (a) each exposed part is treated as if it is energised until it is isolated and proved not to be energised.1 Division 1 – Preliminary Section 8 – Purpose of divs 2 to 5 Divisions 2 to 5 each prescribe a way of discharging the electrical safety obligation of an employer or self-employed person to ensure the person’s business or undertaking is conducted in a way that is electrically safe. 3.1.3 . and (b) each high voltage exposed part is earthed. Section 11 – Requirements for electrical work (1) An employer or self-employed person must ensure that. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. unless the circumstances required under this division for the performance of live work apply. THE ELECTRICAL SAFETY REGULATION 2002 The following provisions are extracts from the Electrical Safety Regulation 2002. (2) Without limiting what the employer or self-employed person must do to ensure compliance with subsection (1).2 Division 2 – Basic requirements for electrical work Section 9 – Definition for div 2 In this division – “electrical work” does not include high voltage live line work.1 Par t 2 – Electrical work 3. 3. Section 10 – Application of div 2 This division applies to the per for mance of electrical work for the purposes of the business or undertaking of an employer or selfemployed person.1. live work is not performed. . T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 14 3.

Example for subparagraph (iii) – It may be necessary. whether or not electrical safety. (iii) there is no reasonable alter native to per for ming the electrical work by live work. 15 . (c) the employer or self-employed person authorises the per formance of the live work only after consultation with the person in control of the electrical equipment the subject of the electrical work. (ii) a supply of electricity is necessary for the proper performance of the electrical work. to avoid widespread outages. the testing equipment has been properly maintained. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 Section 12 – Requirements for performance of live work (1) The following circumstances are required for the performance of live work – (a) it is not practicable to perform the electrical work other than by live work because of 1 or more of the following – (i) it is necessary in the interests of safety. (d) the person who per for ms the live work has appropriate qualifications and training for the performance of the live work. (e) testing equipment appropriate to the performance of the live work has been given to the person per forming the electrical work. and the person per forming the electrical work makes proper use of the testing equipment in performing the work. to perform electrical work on works of an electricity entity by live work. (b) the employer or self-employed person has prepared a written risk assessment of the performance of the live work. Example for subparagraph (i) – It may be necessary in the interests of road safety for a set of traffic lights to remain operating while electrical work is performed on the lights. for the work to be per formed while the electrical equipment the subject of the electrical work is energised.3 .

. for live work on a low voltage electrical installation. (i) there is a safety observer observing the per formance of the electrical work. is able to be reached quickly without the need to climb over or shift obstructions. (j) the performance of the electrical work is in accordance with a safe system of work.3 . except for electric line work. unless the work involves testing electrical equipment. a system of work that complies with the provisions of AS/NZS 4836 (Safe working on low voltage electrical installations) about ensuring the safety of persons while performing live work. (2) In this section – “safe system of work”. Example of what a safe system of work could include for paragraph (j) – A safe system could include preventing persons from accessing the area where live work is being performed if the persons are not needed for the performance of the work. but is not limited to. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 16 (f) clothing and personal protective equipment appropriate to the per for mance of the live work has been given to the person performing the electrical work and the person performing the electrical work makes proper use of the clothing and equipment in performing the work. includes. (h) the area where the electrical work is per for med is clear of obstructions to the extent necessary for easy access to and from the area. (g) the isolation point of the electricity supply for the electrical equipment the subject of the electrical work has been clearly identified and.

must ensure the electrical equipment is tested. 3. (3) A licensed electrical contractor or electricity entity who performs the electrical work of connecting the electrical equipment to a source of electricity is tested as required under subsections (5) and (6).3 . means a person – (a) who is competent to help with the electrical work. as required under subsections (5) and (6). and (c) whose competence for paragraph (b) has been assessed in the last 6 months. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. and (b) who is competent to rescue the person per for ming the electrical work and to provide resuscitation. (2) A person who per for ms part or all of the electrical work.1. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 “safety observer”. electrical work performed on an electrical installation. (4) Subsection (3) does not require a distribution entity to ensure the testing of the electrical equipment if – (a) the electrical work is.3 Division 4 – Testing of work Section 14 – Testing of electrical equipment after electrical work (1) This section applies if electrical work is per for med on electrical equipment. 8 Section 158 (Certificate by licensed electrical contractor of test) 17 . in relation to the observing of the performance of electrical work. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. and is responsible for bringing the electrical equipment to a state of readiness for connection to a source of electricity for use for its intended purpose. and (b) a licensed electrical contractor has given the distribution entity a certificate under section 158 8 about the testing of the electrical work performed on the electrical installation. or is part of.

is electrically safe. (6) If the electrical equipment is energised for testing. is electrically safe. Maximum penalty for subsection (5) – 20 penalty units.3 . . as soon as practicable after the testing. to the extent it is affected by the electrical work.1. ensure that the person for whom the electrical work was performed is given a certificate complying with this section. Section 15 – Certificate of testing and safety (1) This section applies if a licensed electrical contractor per for ms electrical work that must be tested under this division. (2) The contractor must. to the extent it is affected by the electrical work. 3. the person who performs the test must ensure persons not necessary for the testing are electrically safe. (d) the number of the electrical contractor licence under which the electrical equipment was tested.4 Division 5 – Requirements applying to employers and self-employed persons Section 16 – Application of div 5 This division applies to the per for mance of electrical work for the purposes of the business or undertaking of an employer or selfemployed person. (b) the electrical equipment tested. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 18 (5) The testing of the electrical equipment must be directed at ensuring that the electrical equipment. (3) The certificate must state the following – (a) the name and address of the person for whom the work was performed. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. (c) the day the electrical equipment was tested. (5) A licensed electrical contractor must keep a copy of a certificate given under this section for at least 5 years after the certificate is given. (4) The certificate must certify that the electrical equipment.

3 . Section 18 – Employer or self-employed person to ensure suitability of testing instruments (1) This section applies to the following – (a) an employer of a person required to perform tests on electrical work or safety equipment. Maximum penalty for subsection (2) – 40 penalty units. and (iv) labelled to state the day on or before which it is next due for testing. and (v) in good repair and condition. Maximum penalty for subsection (2) – 20 penalty units. and (iii) if it is safety equipment that can not be visually confirmed as being correctly functioning and safe-tested at least every 6 months to ensure it provides the protection it is intended to provide. (2) The employer or self-employed person must keep records of the tests performed under subsection (1)(b)(iii) for at least 5 years. and being performed. (ii) maintained so that it is suitable for use in the electrical work 19 . T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 Section 17 – Testing and maintenance of safety equipment (1) An employer or self-employed person must ensure that – (a) safety equipment is used in the performance of electrical work. (b) a self-employed person required to perform tests on electrical work or safety equipment. (2) The employer or self-employed person must ensure – (a) the test instruments used for the testing are designed for. and (c) records of tests performed are kept for at least 5 years. the required tests. and (b) if a testing instrument can not be visually confirmed as being correctly functioning and safe-that the instrument is tested at least every 6 months to ensure it is in proper working order. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. and capable of correctly performing. and (b) the safety equipment is – (i) a suitable type for the electrical work being performed.

the worker has de-energised. (3) The electrical worker must also ensure that – (a) the device. (2) The licensed electrical worker must ensure that there is attached to the device. and (c) to de-energise. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. a warning sign that is suitable in the circumstances. and (d) while the worker is per forming the work. . is locked. the worker does not have the device under the worker’s sole effective control. the item of electrical equipment.3 . a licensed electrical worker must not connect the equipment to a source of electricity for use for its intended purpose. or Examples for paragraph (a) – • • • Using a personal lock to lock an air conditioner isolator in the open position Using a locking device that stops a miniature circuit breaker from being closed Placing a lockable shroud on the male inlet plug of electrical equipment. Section 20 – Signs on switches and disconnection points (1) This section applies if – (a) a licensed electrical worker is performing electrical work. having regard to AS 1319 (Safety signs for the occupational environment). T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 20 3. or otherwise isolated from electricity. the licensed electrical worker has operated a device.5 Division 6 – Other requirements Section 19 – Electrical equipment with serious defect not to be connected to electricity source If an item of electrical equipment has a serious defect.1. an item of electrical equipment that is the subject of the electrical work or that is near where the electrical work is being performed. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. and (b) to perform the work. or otherwise isolate. when in the open position. in a prominent position.

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(b) other precautions are taken to stop the device being accidentally closed. Examples for paragraph (b) – • • • Disengaging a circuit breaker so that the circuit breaker is separated from the busbars Removing circuit cables from the fuse or circuit breaker Insertion of a mechanical restriction.

Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. (4) If the electrical work is being per formed for the purposes of the business or undertaking of an employer or self-employed person, the employer or self-employed person must ensure that – (a) the licensed electrical worker has all the signs and equipment necessary for the worker to comply with subsections (2) and (3); and (b) the signs and equipment are used in the way required under the subsections. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. (5) In this section – “device” means a circuit-breaker, disconnection point, fuse or switch. Section 21 – Rescue and resuscitation training An employer must ensure workers who are required to perform, or help in performing, electrical work are competent in rescue and resuscitation in accordance with recognised practices in the electricity industry. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units.

3.1.6 Division 7 – Documents about electrical work
Section 22 – Application of div 7 This division applies to the performance of electrical work as part of the business or undertaking of a licensed electrical contractor.

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Section 23 – Who may sign documents about electrical work A person must not sign a document required under the Act, or by an electricity entity, about the performance of electrical work unless the person is – (a) if the electrical work was per for med as part of the business or undertaking of a licensed electrical contractor who is an individual – the individual; or (b) if the electrical work was per for med as part of the business or undertaking of a licensed electrical contractor that is a partnership – a qualified person for the partnership; or (c) if the electrical work was per formed as part of the business or undertaking of a licensed electrical contractor that is a corporation or other entity – a qualified person for the corporation or other entity. Maximum penalty – 20 penalty units.

3.1.7 Division 8 – General provisions
Section 24 – Misrepresentations about electrical equipment or work (1) A person must not, in trade or commerce, represent that someone who is not a licensed electrical worker may lawfully – (a) connect to a source of electricity an item of electrical equipment that may only be connected to a source of electricity by a licensed electrical worker; or (b) do electrical work that may only be done by a licensed electrical worker. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. (2) An employer must take all reasonable steps to ensure the employer’s workers do not contravene subsection (1). Maximum penalty for subsection (2) – 40 penalty units.

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3.2 Par t 4 – Working around electrical par ts
3.2.1 Division 1 – Preliminary
Section 58 – Purpose of pt 4 (1) This part prescribes a way of discharging the electrical safety obligation of an employer or self-employed person to ensure that the person’s business or undertaking is conducted in a way that is electrically safe. (2) In particular, this part prescribes requirements about persons performing work in contact with, or near to, electrical parts. Section 59 – Definitions for pt 4 In this part – “authorised person”, for an electrical part, means a person who – (a) has enough technical knowledge and experience to do work that involves contact with, or being near to, the electrical part; and (b) has been approved by the person in control of the electrical part to do work that involves contact with, or being near to, the electrical part, or is authorised to act for the person in control of the electrical part. “direct contact” see section 60. “electrical part” means – (a) an exposed part; or (b) an overhead insulated electric line. “exclusion zone” see section 61. “handling” includes any of the following – (a) carrying; (b) connected to, whether or not temporarily; (c) controlling; (d) holding; (e) lifting. “instructed person”, for an electrical part, means a person who is acting under the supervision of an authorised person for the electrical part.

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whether or not electrical work. other than live work or electrical welding performed in accordance with a safe system of work. Example of plant that is not operating plant – • A furniture removal van under an electric line raising or lowering the electrically or hydraulically operated platform located at the rear of the van. or (d) an article of clothing wor n by the person is touching a conductive object. Section 60 – Meaning of “direct contact” (1) A person is in “direct contact” with an electrical part if – (a) the person is touching the electrical part with the person’s bare hands or another bare part of the person’s body. means a person who is not an authorised person or an instructed person for the electrical part. and the conductive object is touching the electrical part. or (b) the person is touching a conductive object with the person’s bare hands or another bare part of the person’s body. “work” means work of any type. or (c) an article of clothing wor n by the person is touching the electrical part. if neither the platform nor anything on the platform rises above the roof of the van. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 24 “operating plant” means plant being operated for its intended purpose. for an electrical part. unless the operation of the plant can not materially affect the distance between the plant and any electrical part in relation to which there is an exclusion zone under this part. . Examples of operating plant – • • • • • A tip truck tipping a load A fixed crane operating at a building site A vehicle that includes an elevated work platform being used for clearing vegetation from around overhead electric lines A concrete pumping truck pumping concrete A harvester with height changeable attachments being used to transfer grain to a truck. and the conductive object is touching the electrical part. “untrained person”.3 .

the authorised person or instructed person must be taken to be an untrained person. plant or vehicle in schedule 2. means the distance from the part stated for the person. (5) For applying schedule 2 to operating plant operated by an authorised person or instructed person who does not have a safety observer or another safe system as required under the schedule. (3) A vehicle is in “direct contact” with an electrical part if – (a) any part of the vehicle is touching the electrical part. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 (2) Operating plant is in “direct contact” with an electrical part if – (a) any part of the operating plant is touching the electrical part. the vehicle includes anything the vehicle is carrying or otherwise handling. and 25 . or (b) anything being carried or otherwise handled by the vehicle is touching the electrical part. Section 61 – Meaning of “exclusion zone” (1) The “exclusion zone”. the exclusion zone. (6) However. the person includes any article of clothing worn by the person. or (b) anything the operating plant is handling is touching the electrical part. (2) For applying schedule 2 to a person. for an electrical part. is taken to be the same as the exclusion zone for an authorised person or instructed person for the electrical part if – (a) the operating plant is fitted with a device capable of stopping the operation of the operating plant immediately the operating plant is at the exclusion zone for an authorised person or instructed person for the electrical part. (3) For applying schedule 2 to operating plant. (4) For applying schedule 2 to a vehicle. for a person for an electrical part. or for operating plant or a vehicle for an electrical part. the operating plant includes anything the operating plant is handling.3 . for operating plant operated by an authorised person or instructed person for the electrical part. and any conductive object the person is holding or carrying.

(7) A reference in schedule 2 to a vehicle does not include a reference to – (a) an aircraft. and (ii) is set for at least the correct exclusion zone distance. and (b) provides. or (b) a vehicle that is operating plant. the vehicle would be a vehicle for schedule 2. and (d) without limiting paragraph (b). the same level of electrical safety as. Examples for paragraph (b) – • A tip truck tipping a load would not be a vehicle for schedule 2.3 . or a greater level of electrical safety than. the safe system of work ensures the device mentioned in paragraph (a) – (i) is operating properly. a reference to ‘another safe system’ is a reference to a system of work that – (a) has been developed in consultation with persons who are broadly representative of industrial organisations of employees whose members commonly operate operating plant of the operating plant’s type. for persons and property. a tip truck travelling between sites would be a vehicle for schedule 2 • A vehicle that includes an elevated work platform being used for clearing vegetation would not be a vehicle for schedule 2. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 26 (b) there is in place a safe system of work for the use of the operating plant. (8) For applying schedule 2 to operating plant. However. the level of electrical safety provided with a safety observer. However. . and (c) the safe system of work has been developed in consultation with persons who are broadly representative of industrial organisations of employees whose members commonly operate operating plant of the operating plant’s type. when the platfor m is not being used for clearing vegetation.

T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 3. (2) Subsection (1)(a) does not apply to a person if – (a) the person is an authorised person or instructed person for the electrical part.3 . or (b) any operating plant or vehicle coming into direct contact with an electrical part. or (c) a person coming within the exclusion zone for the person for an electrical part. and (c) the electrical part is a low voltage over head insulated electric line.2 Division 2 – Requirements for working around electrical parts Section 62 – Employer or self-employed person to ensure work is performed in accordance with requirements (1) An employer or self-employed person must ensure that work performed in the conduct of the person’s business or undertaking does not involve. and (b) the electrical part is a low voltage over head insulated electric line. except in accordance with the requirements of this division – (a) a person coming into direct contact with an electrical part. (3) Subsection (1)(b) and (d) does not apply to operating plant if – (a) the operating plant is being operated by an authorised person or instructed person for the electrical part. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. 27 . or (d) any operating plant or vehicle coming within the exclusion zone for the operating plant or vehicle for an electrical part. and (b) a safety observer is being used.2.

will be effective to isolate the electrical part from all sources of electricity. if it is not practicable for subsection (1)(b) to be complied with. and (b) tested to ensure it is. and (b) if the work is being performed in the business or undertaking of an employer-the employer has given written instructions. the work may nevertheless be performed if – (a) the work can be performed safely. isolated from all sources of electricity. or otherwise confirmed to be. and (b) tested to ensure it is. and (b) there is in place an earthing switch that is able to control the operation of the electrical part and is designed to operate safely if the electrical part has not been isolated from all sources of electricity. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 28 Section 63 – Work involving direct contact with electrical part (1) Work may be per for med involving a person coming into direct contact with an electrical part if the electrical part is – (a) isolated from all sources of electricity. Section 64 – Work within exclusion zone for electrical part (1) Work may be per formed involving a person. and (c) if the electrical part is a high voltage electrical part-earthed. operating plant or vehicle for an electrical part. (2) However.3 . if the electrical part is – (a) isolated from all sources of electricity. and (c) if the electrical part is a high voltage electrical part-earthed. either generally or directed at the particular circumstances. about the work to be performed and the precautions to be complied with. other than by coming into direct contact with the electrical part. and the employer has given written instructions to the person performing the work that. if complied with. (2) Subsection (1)(b) does not apply as a requirement if – (a) the electrical part can not be directly contacted to prove isolation from all sources of electricity. and (c) the work is being per formed in the business or undertaking of an employer. or otherwise confirmed to be. and . isolated from all sources of electricity. operating plant or a vehicle coming within the exclusion zone for the person.

and (b) despite the requirements of section 62. or (ii) operating plant or a vehicle coming into direct contact with an overhead electric line. (ii) the work is testing. is designed in a way requiring the work to be per formed while the person. or (iv) operating plant or a vehicle coming within the exclusion zone for the operating plant or vehicle for an over head electric line.3 Division 3 – Consultation with persons in control of electrical lines Section 64A – Requirement to consult (1) This section applies if – (a) work is to be per for med in the conduct of the business or undertaking of an employer or self-employed person. or an item of electrical equipment of which the electrical part is a component. operating plant or vehicle for the electrical part. 3. and is per formed after the electrical part or item of electrical equipment has been isolated and proved to be de-energised. operating plant or vehicle is within the exclusion zone for the person. (iii) the work is earthing of the electrical part. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 (c) at least 1 of the following applies – (i) suitable barriers or earthed metal shields are installed between the person. or an item of electrical equipment of which the electrical part is a component.2. and the electrical part. operating plant or vehicle and the electrical part. there is a reasonable likelihood the performance of the work could involve – (i) a person coming into direct contact with an over head electric line. 29 .3 . or (iii) a person coming within the exclusion zone for the person for an overhead electric line.

and explaining how this can be arranged • Advice recommending erecting physical barriers to enclose the over head electric line. within 7 days after receiving the written notice under subsection (2). and explaining how this can be arranged. the employer or self-employed person can best ensure the electrical safety of persons and property in the performance of the work. as well as complying with this regulation. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. means a written notice advising how. and explaining how this can be arranged • Advice recommending relocating the overhead electric line or replacing the over head electric line with an underground cable.3 . Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. unless the employer or self-employed person has a reasonable excuse. give the employer or self-employed person a safety advice about the performance of the work. (5) In this section – “safety advice” about the performance of work in the conduct of the business or undertaking of an employer or self-employed person. Examples of what might be included in a safety advice – • Advice recommending de-energising the overhead electric line while the work is being performed. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 30 (2) The employer or self-employed person must give the person in control of the overhead electric line written notice of the employer or self-employed person’s intention to perform the work. . (3) The person in control of the overhead electric line must. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. (4) The employer or self-employed person must not allow the work to be started before the employer or self-employed person has received the safety advice from the person in control of the overhead electric line.

in the conduct of the business or undertaking.3.3 Par t 5 – Electrical Installations 3. and (b) the work per for med is work that the person would be authorised to perform on the electric motor under the person’s electrical work licence if the electric motor were electrical equipment. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. means work on the electric motor that would be electrical work if the electric motor were electrical equipment.3 . 31 . T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 3.1 Division 1 – Performing Electrical Work Section 69 – Work involving electric motor forming part of vehicle (1) A person must not perform work on an electric motor forming part of a vehicle unless – (a) the person is a licensed electrical worker. but is not electrical equipment under the Act because of the operation of section 14(2) of the Act. (2) An employer or self-employed person whose business or undertaking includes the performance of work on an electric motor must ensure that. “work”. on an electric motor. “vehicle” does not include a car or motorbike under the Transport Operations (Road Use Management) Act 1995. (3) In this section – “electric motor” means an electric motor that is electrical equipment within the meaning of section 14(1)2 of the Act. a person does not perform work in contravention of subsection (1). Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units.

. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 32 3.4 Par t 8 – Electricity Supply 3. and holds an electrical mechanic licence. and (b) protected against damage. or the self-employed person. performs work.3. and (b) performs electrical installation work on a consumer’s consumer terminals.1 Division 1 – Connection to source of electricity Section 155 – Disconnection and reconnection of low voltage electrical installation (1) This section applies to person who – (a) is a licensed electrical contractor. main switchboard or consumer mains.3 . whether or not electrical work.4. 3. at a workplace. Subdivision 2 – All work Section 84 – Application of div 2 This subdivision applies to an employer or self-employed person if the employer or a worker of the employer. Section 85 – Cord extension sets and flexible cables (1) An employer or self-employed person must ensure that any cord extension set or flexible cable at the workplace is – (a) located where it is not likely to suffer damage. (2) In this section – “damage” includes damage by liquid. employed by an electrical contractor.2 Division 5 – Workplace electrical installations Subdivision 1 – Preliminary Section 82 – Purpose of div 5 This division prescribes a way of discharging the electrical safety obligation of an employer or self employed person to ensure that the person’s business or undertaking is conducted in a way that is electrically safe. or a licensed electrical worker.

a serious electrical incident or dangerous electrical event happens. is electrically safe. deenergise and re-energise the consumer’s electrical installation by – (a) removing and replacing a fuse wedge from a service fuse. in the course of the conduct of the business or undertaking of an employer or self-employed person. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 (2) Despite anything else in this division. the person may. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units.3 . 3. and (b) ensure that the written notice is received by the chief executive within 24 hours after the employer or self-employed person first becomes aware of the happening of the incident or event. in accordance with recognised electricity industry practice. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units.2 Division 3 – Testing Section 160 – Performance of examinations or test A distribution entity that carries out an examination or test required under this part in relation to an electrical installation must examine or test to ensure that the electrical installation. (2) The employer or self-employed person must – (a) give written notice of the incident or event to the chief executive in the approved form.5 Par t 12 – Incident notification and repor ting Section 196 – Employer or self-employed person to advise chief executive of serious electrical incident or dangerous electrical event9 (1) This section applies if. 3. (3) The person must test to confirm the electrical installation is safe to connect to the source of electricity before connecting the installation to a source of electricity. or (b) switching off and on a circuit-breaker installed as a service line disconnector. 9 The terms “serious electrical incident” and “dangerous electrical event” are defined in Appendix A. Maximum penalty for subsection (3) – 40 penalty units.4. 33 . to the extent of the required examination or test.

Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. the employer or selfemployed person must also advise the chief executive of the incident. (2) A person. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 34 (3) However. (3 A person does not commit an offence against subsection (2) if the movement or interference is necessary – (a) to save life or relieve suffering. Section 201 – Scene not to be interfered with (1) This section applies if a serious electrical incident or dangerous electrical event happens at a place. if the electricity entity has not authorised the person to climb the pole. fax or another suitable form of immediate and effective communication.1 Division 3 – Other matters Section 208 – Climbing poles of electricity entity prohibited (1) A person must not climb a pole. other structure or ladder. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. standard. standard or other structure that is part of the works of an electricity entity. or a ladder attached to a pole. .3 . involved in the happening of the incident or event without the permission of – (a) an inspector. must not move or otherwise inter fere with any electrical equipment. standard or other structure that is part of the works of an electricity entity. if the incident or event that happens is a serious electrical incident in which a person has been killed.6. (2) Subsection (1) does not apply to an inspector. other than a person acting under the authority of the distribution entity for the incident or event. or part of any electrical equipment. 3. by phone. or (b) if an inspector is not available. or (b) to prevent injury to a person or property damage. a police officer.6 Par t 13 – Miscellaneous provisions 3. immediately the employer or self-employed person becomes aware of the happening of the incident.

3 . T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2

Section 209 – Obligations of employer about supervising training person (1) The employer of a training person who has not finished 6 months of the person’s apprenticeship or training program must ensure that the training person does not work – (a) in the immediate vicinity of a live high voltage exposed part; or (b) where there is a risk that the training person could come into contact with a live low voltage exposed part. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. (2) An employer must ensure that a training person who per for ms electrical work is supervised at all times by a licensed electrical worker licensed to perform the work. Maximum penalty – 40 penalty units. (3) The level of supervision required under subsection (2) must be appropriate, having regard to – (a) the type of electrical work performed; and (b) the adequacy of the training person’s training; and (c) the competency of the training person. (4) In this section – “training person” means a person who is undertaking, but has not finished – (a) an apprenticeship under the Training and Employment Act 2000, in a calling that requires the person to perform electrical work; or (b) a training program approved by the chief executive that requires the person to perform electrical work.

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3 . T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2
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3.7 Schedule 2 – Exclusion zones for electrical par ts
3.7.1 Part 1 – exclusion zones for exposed parts for UNTRAINED PERSONS and for operating plant and vehicles operated by untrained persons
Nominal phase to phase voltage of exposed part Untrained person for the exposed part (mm) Operating plant operated by untrained person for the exposed part (mm) 3 000 Vehicle operated by untrained person for the exposed part (mm) 600

Low voltage (with consultation with person in control of exposed part) Low voltage (without consultation with person in control of exposed part) Above low voltage, up to 33kV (with consultation with person in control of exposed part) Above low voltage, up to 33kV (without consultation with person in control of exposed part) Above 33 kV up to 50 kV Above 50 kV up to 66 kV Above 66 kV up to 110 kV

1 000

3 000

3 000

600

2 000

3 000

900

3 000

3 000

900

3 000 3 000 3 000

3 000 3 000 3 000

2 100 2 100 2 100

3 . T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2

Part 1 continued – UNTRAINED PERSONS – Alternating current and direct current

Nominal phase to phase voltage of exposed part

Untrained person for the exposed part (mm)

Operating plant operated by untrained person for the exposed part (mm) 3 000 6 000 6 000 6 000 8 000 8 000

Vehicle operated by untrained person for the exposed part (mm) 2 100 2 900 2 900 3 400 4 400 4 400

Above 110 kV up to 132 kV Above 132 kV up to 220 kV Above 220 kV up to 275 kV Above 275 kV up to 330 kV Above 330 kV up to 400 kV Above 400 kV up to 500 kV Nominal pole to earth dc voltage of exposed part +/- 25 kV +/- 85 kV +/- 150 kV +/- 270 kV +/- 350 kV +/- 400 kV

3 000 4 500 5 000 6 000 6 000 6 000

3 000 3 000 3 000 4 500 5 000 6 000

3 000 3 000 3 000 6 000 6 000 6 000

900 2 100 2 100 2 900 2 900 3 400

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with part (mm) safety observer or another safe system of work (mm) (No exclusion zone prescribed) (No exclusion zone prescribed) 700 1 200 700 1 000 600 1 000 Vehicle operated by authorised person or instructed person for the exposed part (mm) Low voltage (with consultation with person in control of exposed part) Low voltage (without consultation with person in control of exposed part) Above low voltage.7.3 . up to 33kV (with consultation with person in control of exposed part) Above low voltage. up to 33kV (without consultation with person in control of exposed part) Above 33 kV up to 50 kV Above 50 kV up to 66 kV Above 66 kV up to 110 kV 600 700 1 200 700 750 1 000 1 000 1 300 1 400 1 800 750 1 000 1 000 .2 Par t 2 – exclusion zones for exposed par ts for AUTHORISED AND INSTRUCTED PERSONS and for operating plant and vehicles operated by authorised or instructed persons Nominal phase to phase voltage of exposed part Operating plant Authorised operated by person or authorised person instructed person or instructed for the exposed person for the exposed part. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 38 3.

85 kV +/.3 .150 kV +/.25 kV +/.350 kV +/.270 kV +/. with safety observer (mm) 1 800 2 400 3 000 3 700 4 000 4 600 Vehicle operated by authorised person or instructed person for the exposed part (mm) Above 110 kV up to 132 kV Above 132 kV up to 220 kV Above 220 kV up to 275 kV Above 275 kV up to 330 kV Above 330 kV up to 400 kV Above 400 kV up to 500 kV Nominal pole to earth dc voltage of exposed part +/.400 kV 1 200 1 800 2 300 3 000 3 300 3 900 1 200 1 800 2 300 3 000 3 300 3 900 700 1 000 1 200 1 800 2 500 2 900 1 200 1 800 1 800 2 400 3 200 3 600 700 1 000 1 200 1 800 2 500 2 900 39 . T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 Part 2 continued – AUTHORISED AND INSTRUCTED PERSONS – Alternating current and direct current Nominal phase to phase voltage of exposed part Authorised person or instructed person for the exposed part (mm) Operating plant operated by authorised person or instructed person for the exposed part.

an authorised person for the electric line Without consultation with.3 . and insulation verified by. an authorised person for the electric line (No exclusion zone prescribed) 300 3 000 3 000 600 . and without insulation verified by. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 40 3.7.3 Par t 3 – Exclusion zones for low voltage over head insulated electric line for UNTRAINED PERSONS and for operating plant or vehicles operated by untrained persons Low voltage overhead insulated electric line Untrained person (mm) Operating plant operated by untrained person for the electric line (mm) 1 000 Vehicle operated by untrained person for the electric line (mm) With consultation with.

and insulation verified by.4 Par t 4 – Exclusion zones for low voltage over head insulated electric line for AUTHORISED OR INSTRUCTED persons and for operating plant or vehicles operated by authorised or instructed persons Low voltage overhead insulated electric line Authorised person or instructed person for the electric line (mm) Operating plant operated by authorised person or instructed person for the electric line. with safety observer or another safe system of work (mm) (No exclusion zone prescribed) Vehicle operated by authorised person or instructed person for the electric line (mm) With consultation with. and without insulation verified by. an authorised person for the electric line (No exclusion zone prescribed) (No exclusion zone prescribed) (No exclusion zone prescribed) (No exclusion zone prescribed) 600 41 .3 .7. an authorised person for the electric line Without consultation with. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 3.

5 Par t 5 – Exclusion zones for high voltage overhead insulated electric line for UNTRAINED PERSONS and for operating plant or vehicles operated by untrained persons Nominal phase to phase voltage of high voltage overhead insulated electric line Untrained person for the electric line (mm) Operating plant operated by untrained person for the electric line (mm) 3 000 Vehicle operated by untrained person for the electric line (mm) 900 Above low voltage.3 . up to 33kV (with consultation with person in control of electric line) Above low voltage.85 kV 2 000 3 000 3 000 900 3 000 3 000 3 000 3 000 2 100 2 100 3 000 3 000 3 000 3 000 900 2 100 .7. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 42 3. up to 33kV (without consultation with person in control of electric line) Above 33 kV up to 50 kV Above 50 kV up to 66 kV Nominal pole to earth dc voltage of electric line +/.25 kV +/.

25 kV +/.7. T H E E L E C T R I C A L S A F E T Y R E G U L AT I O N 2 0 0 2 3. up to 33kV (without consultation with person in control of electric line) Above 33 kV up to 50 kV Above 50 kV up to 66 kV Nominal pole to earth dc voltage of electric line +/.85 kV 700 700 700 700 750 1 000 750 1 000 750 1 000 700 1 000 700 1 000 700 1 000 43 . up to 33kV (with consultation with person in control of electric line) Above low voltage.3 . with safety for electric observer or another line (mm) safe system of work (mm) 700 700 Above low voltage.6 Par t 6 – Exclusion zones for high voltage overhead insulated electric line for AUTHORISED AND INSTRUCTED persons and for operating plant and vehicles operated by authorised or instructed persons Nominal phase to phase voltage of high voltage overhead insulated electric line Authorised person or instructed person for electric line (mm) Operating plant Vehicle operated operated by by authorised authorised person person or or instructed person for electric instructed person line.

The relationship between hazard and risk is sometimes represented simply as: Risk = Hazard X Exposure In the above relationship. plant. The associated risk is the likelihood that a worker might be electrocuted when they come in contact with exposed live electrical parts. is a hazard. Risk is the likelihood that death.2 Hazards and risks Hazards and risks are NOT the same thing. If there is a regulation or ministerial notice about the hazards. and ✱ “Hazard” would include the possible consequences of an incident due to such a hazard eg death. For example. work processes or other aspects of the work environment. This can include substances. the terms: ✱ “Exposure” would cover factors such as frequency of exposure to the hazard and probability of an incident caused by the hazard. you must implement those requirements. . RISK MANAGEMENT 4. severe injury or property damage or both. injury or illness might result because of the hazard. This section examines the basics of such a process.3 The risk management process There are five basic steps in the risk management process. R I S K M A N AG E M E N T 44 4.4 . 4. 4. A hazard is something with the potential to cause harm.1 General This Code of Practice should be used on the basis that appropriate workplace health and safety risk management processes are applied. the energy in electricity. as follows: ✱ Identify the hazards present in a particular work situation. that has the potential to cause an electric shock and result in a serious or even fatal injury.

4 . ✱ Decide on control measures to eliminate the hazard or minimise the level of the risks of injury or property damage. and Figure 1 The risk management process 45 . Redesign equipment or work process. If there is a code of practice. then Use appropriate personal protective equipment In deciding which control measures to adopt. Isolate the hazard. Substitute with a less hazardous material. This step will help to deter mine the level of risk associated with the identified hazards and establish a priority list based on the risk level of each hazard. ✱ Implement the control measures. process or equipment. Introduce administrative controls. you should start at the top of the hierarchy and work your way down. The desired outcome is a priority list for control measures. you must either do what the code says or adopt another way to manage the exposure to the risk. R I S K M A N AG E M E N T ✱ Assess the risks of injury or property damage that may result from the hazards. The preferred hierarchy of control is: • • • • • • Eliminate the hazard.

✱ Arcing. 4.4 Common electrical hazards 4. Compounds ranging from ozone to cyanide and sulphuric acids can be present as well as the hazards such as low oxygen content in the air. and ✱ Toxic gasses causing illness or death. tracking through or across a medium. The five steps of the risk management process are illustrated in Figure 1. It may be necessary to modify the control measures or the way they were implemented if the measures were not effective or if new problems arose because of the implementation of the original control measures. The electric shock may be received by direct contact. . or by arcing.4 . The three common electrical hazards may be present individually or combined. The injuries are often occur suffered when because high fault arcing or explosion or both currents are present. These categories are: ✱ Electric shock causing injury or death. R I S K M A N AG E M E N T 46 ✱ Monitor and review the effectiveness of the control measures.1 Electrical hazards and causes of injury The common electrical hazards and causes of injury can be broken into three broad categories. explosion or fire causing burns. Burning and arcing associated with electrical equipment causes a range of gases and contaminants to be present.4.

✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ Preventing falls. Working on roadways. are relatively clear. smell or sound. ✱ The use of flammable gases such as liquid petroleum. ✱ Working in confined spaces. acetylene etc. 47 .3 of this Code for guidance regarding the identification of hazards and section B. These fields. the identification (or recognition of the potential) of the hazards can be more difficult. burning materials such as PVC and epoxy resins can cause the atmosphere to become hazardous. listed above. can cause inter ference with cardiac pacemakers and other medically implanted electronic devices. Areas. However. if a fault occurred in the main switch-room of a large shopping centre all three of the electrical hazards could be present. Refer to section 4. especially if the source of the field is a direct current. chemicals. oxygen. as electricity is not usually detected by sight.4 . R I S K M A N AG E M E N T For example. solvents. The presence of step and touch potentials10 should be addressed as well as the potential for an explosion. synthetic resins.1 for further information on electrical hazards. outside the scope of this Code. forms of asbestos and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB). The use of hazardous substances such as poisons. The categories of common electrical hazards. eg when working at height. Use of explosive powered tools. Precautions should also be taken to prevent other hazards such as flying metal objects. ✱ Electric field strength and magnetic field strengths. that should also be addressed include: ✱ The flammable atmosphere in battery rooms or hazardous locations. 10 The term “step and touch potential” is defined in Appendix A. Further. Parts that are normally energised or that may become energised under fault conditions must be treated as live until the parts are proven deenergised. and ✱ The use of explosives.

A person in control of electrical equipment should make sure that where isolation and access is complex. and ✱ Have skills and knowledge in the area of work. WORKING DE-ENERGISED 48 5.2 Regulator y requirement For Regulatory information refer to section 3. These guidelines apply to both alternating and direct current systems.5. 5. and ✱ De-energising and earthing high voltage parts.3 General An employer or self-employed person should ensure that an effective process of isolation and access is used to protect electrical workers and others. WORKING DE-ENERGISED 5. there are sufficient instructions to ensure the process is performed safely. 5. A safe system of work should be developed with people who: ✱ Are representative of the electrical workers.1 Scope This section provides guidelines for creating an electrically safe work environment by removing sources of electrical risk by: ✱ De-energising low voltage. Instructions for isolation and access should be documented where: ✱ Complex isolation and access is to be performed. or ✱ Both of the above apply. . ✱ Isolation and access is to be per formed on a complex electrical system.

include: ✱ The capacity of switching devices to make and break load currents. including in-rush currents. ✱ Contingency actions to be taken should a fault occur. If a thermal over load trips a motor.5. 49 . and A safety switch (residual current device) trips. de-energising and reenergising must be per for med under a safe system of work. and ✱ Creating circulating currents within ring feeds of networks. Other electrical safety considerations that should apply to deenergising. The electrical safety of workers and others should be addressed when switching.1 De-energising and re-energising Switching. WORKING DE-ENERGISED 5.4 Low voltage isolation and access 5. ✱ Connecting sources that may not be synchronised or have the same phase relationship. synchronising and so on. retur n to service. Switching includes switching for isolation. Examples include what form of action should be taken if: • • • The main switch is a circuit breaker and the breaker trips the instant it is closed.4. the process of de-energising and re-energising connecting parts from all sources. ✱ The capacity of switching devices to make and break fault currents.

A warning or safety sign must be attached in a prominent position on each isolation point or device. Isolation points for the job should be explained and. Before you carry out work that is deenergised. people should not alter. a number of isolation points12 may be required. 12 The term “isolation point” is defined in Appendix A. In situations where isolation points are able to be accessed by other people.2 Isolating and disconnecting 5. WORKING DE-ENERGISED 50 5.4. Both electrical and non-electrical workers should clearly understand the method or systems used to isolate and maintain isolation. conclusively proving that the parts are de-energised so that electric shock is not possible. To effectively de-energise parts. you must ensure that supply is effectively isolated. lock or the method used to render the mechanism inoperable. and ✱ Finally.1 Isolating Any parts worked on must be isolated 11 and proved de-energised unless a safe system of work exists and permission has been granted to work live. 11 The term “isolated” is defined in Appendix A. Without proper authority. Matters that should be addressed in the isolation process include: ✱ De-energising the parts from all sources of electrical potential. where practical.4. remove or change the status of a tag.2. . ✱ Removing hazards from other sources of energy eg spring tension or hydraulic pressure within mechanisms.5. shown to each of the workers. Isolation can be achieved by methods or systems using locks or rendering the mechanism inoperable or a combination of these. it is important that the isolation method or system is not able to be inadvertently or easily compromised.

5. Within the electricity industry.2 Disconnecting Out of service tags should be used to identify equipment or machinery that is faulty or not suitable for use and has been taken out of service.4.4. For example. tagging on the job of replacing a 45 kW motor on a feedwater pump while maintenance is being performed on the intake ‘foot valve’ would include: ✱ Circuits for the pump supply. an out-of-service tag does not indicate that equipment or machinery is safe to work on. the safety of all should be addressed. Where isolation and access is required. In general. 5. and ✱ Personal tags.2. locks. Since out of service tags apply to electrical as well as non-electrical persons. Refer to section B. when proving de-energised. the electrical equipment or machinery should be isolated and tagged out of service. Out of service parts should be left in a safe manner. methods of rendering the mechanism inoperable. or a combination of these would then be installed. ✱ Out of service tags would be placed in key locations eg on the starter. WORKING DE-ENERGISED 5. a worker should at least know: 51 . starter control and control and telemetry circuits would be isolated and proved de-energised. the safe system of work should state whether tagging out of service is to occur in addition to isolation and access.3 Proving de-energised Parts must be proved de-energised before work begins. However. an extensive range of devices can be used to prove parts de-energised.2. Where practicable.5 for further information.

✱ The technical limitations of the device. tester or equipment used: • The threshold value of pick-up for the device eg for series test lamps indication of voltages below 35 volts. If the device is to be used outdoors – whether the device is water resistant or waterproof. ✱ How to determine whether the device is within test. The method used to prove de-energised must be effective. Whether a clean connection is required for accurate readings.5. . prove de-energised and re-confirm the tester. These actions should include being able to determine: • • • Is the use of self-test mode preferred to testing the device on a known live source? How can the device be proven if there is no self-test mode and no known source of supply? The sequence of actions required to prove the part deenergised. as applicable. • • • • Whether the device will detect the presence of DC on AC circuits and vice versa. a panel voltmeter should not be used as the only indication that a part is de-energised. ✱ The actions required to complete the process of confirming the tester is operating correctly. inspection or calibration dates. Whether the device indicates induction on a circuit. ✱ What is deemed a conclusive test ie there is conclusive proof that the part is de-energised. For example. and ✱ What is deemed an inconclusive test or incorrect test and what action should be taken to resolve the situation. can depend on the operator and light conditions. as applicable. including self test functions. ✱ How to correctly operate the device. WORKING DE-ENERGISED 52 ✱ How to determine whether the device is fit for purpose.

5. the action of cutting a multi-core control cable is likely to create a hazard if secondary current from a current transfor mer is present. fault finding and energising At times electrical workers need to alter isolation to be able to test or fault find. faultfinding or both – and the alteration of isolation points – should be performed in line with a safe system of work. Both ends of the cable should be checked for isolation prior to cutting.1 Proving cables de-energised before work Where work is to be per formed on a cable. A high voltage may develop across the open circuited secondary winding causing an electric shock. the connections. This hazard may not be initially apparent ie the cable cutters may not be damaged when the cable is cut. Additional precautions should be taken regardless of whether the cable is low voltage. alternative precautions may include: ✱ Using a cable spiking or stabbing device that is fit for purpose. on energised parts. or ✱ A combination of proving de-energised and physically tracing the cable. Ensuring that an insulated or covered cable is de-energised can present difficulties. The safe system should address and control exposure to electric shock and electrical explosion.3. 53 . attached live parts and so on should be proved to be de-energised and identified before work starts.4.2 Cutting cables Particular attention is drawn to cutting cables. or both. If the cable’s connections are exposed.4 Altering isolation for testing. high voltage or a control cable. Testing.4. arcing or a fault at a later stage.3. 5. Typical examples are the testing performed before returning equipment to service and commissioning new equipment. For example.5. the cable should be deenergised.4. Depending on the situation. WORKING DE-ENERGISED 5.

From an electrical safety perspective. Ferro-resonance13. . WORKING DE-ENERGISED 54 Matters that should be addressed when isolation points are altered include: ✱ Ensuring that the isolation system or method is effective and not compromised. Under fault conditions.1 also apply to high voltage. 5. and Working under or over other live conductors.4. and ✱ Refer also to section 6. Control measures should be adopted to reduce exposure to these risks. the risks and consequences of an incident involving high voltage are significantly higher. Feedback from secondary or tertiary systems.5 of this code for details of hazards associated with testing and fault finding. ✱ Contingency plans if the test fails or a hazardous situation is discovered. the higher potentials (voltages) and fault current levels release massive quantities of energy. ✱ Eliminating access to the equipment for all persons not directly involved in the work. Transferred earth potentials14.5.1 General Relevant sources of hazards listed in section 4. 13 The term “ferro-resonance” is defined in Appendix A. ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ Build up of static charges due to weather conditions. Additional sources of hazards for high voltage isolation and access include: ✱ Induction from other circuits and communications equipment such as radio transmitters.5 High voltage isolation and access 5. 14 The term “transferred earth potential” is defined in Appendix A.5. Stored energy in high voltage capacitor banks.

work and access should occur with visible earths and short circuit devices.5. Where people intrude within the safe approach limits for exposed live high voltage parts. Barriers. The principles in section 5. ✱ Testing to prove de-energised to be in line with section 6.5 of this Code. 55 . and. Safety signs. WORKING DE-ENERGISED 5. Other precautions usually include: • • • Taping or roping off.2 High voltage isolation and access system People near exposed live high voltage parts must maintain the safe approach limits detailed in section 3 of this Code.5. ✱ Except in emergency situations. ✱ Effective isolation to prevent lightning or switching surges from compromising the isolation point or points. ✱ In emergency situations the actions taken should be recorded. ✱ Where possible. Elements of a safe system of work for high voltage isolation and access should include: ✱ A mechanism to instruct people on what to isolate to permit access to the high voltage parts as well as to surrender access and reverse isolation – and how to do it.4 of this Code also apply to high voltage. ✱ Placement of “other precautions” should be a control measure for directing people to electrically safe work areas. Electrical safety in the area for access should not be compromised. 15 The term “fault duration” is defined in Appendix A. ✱ Work practices and devices used for earthing and short-circuiting should be capable of withstanding the various prospective fault current levels and clearing times or fault duration15. authority to access high voltage parts that have been earthed and short circuited should be provided by way of a written per mit or authority. the parts must be de-energised and earthed. The per mit or authority may be issued by telephone or radio etc.

When operating a power system (eg to switch. Unless fit for purpose. when per for ming system operations. Earthing installed in a power system is one method used to prevent or minimise electric shocks. and Use alternative insulation. isolate. Use of insulating gloves or mats. so that the effects of step and touch potentials are negligible. Depending on the situation. As it is foreseeable that lethal levels of step and touch potential will exist. or a combination of methods. voltage transients of short duration can create lethal step and touch potentials. better earthing. or Use of equipotential zones where conductive materials create a zone around the worker. If a feeder trips or ‘locks out’. whether or not after reclosing. the actions to energise the feeder should be outlined. an open high voltage circuit breaker should not be considered an effective isolation point. Transients can occur when network operations cause huge quantities of electrical energy to stop flowing suddenly. or both. when a power system is operated. ✱ Having mechanisms in place to deal with protection operations that minimise exposure to electrical hazards and risks.4 metres.5. or both. methods. prove de-energised and so forth) additional risks could be present. de-energise. For example. appropriate control measures should be used. WORKING DE-ENERGISED 56 ✱ A mechanism or process implemented that demonstrates that the isolation and access process is being complied with at all levels. ✱ Operational measures: . ✱ Effective isolation to include control circuits and secondary systems. and ✱ Procedures or mechanisms to be in place to address worker and community safety in emergencies eg damage from cyclones. that should be considered include: ✱ Design and installation measures: • • • • Physically separate or isolate articles eg mount the equipment in a safe location such as above 2. mains on the ground.

✱ Applying and removing portable earths and short circuits.1 Scope This section provides guidelines for safe electrical work practices when working live. WORKING LIVE 6.2 Regulator y requirement For Regulatory information refer to section 3 6. operating rods and similar equipment .6. and ✱ Using high voltage test devices. high voltage parts. measuring sticks etc on. A safe system of live work should be developed with people who: ✱ Are representative of the electrical workers. and ✱ Testing and faultfinding.3.1 Documentation The occasions that live work is permitted is restricted by Regulation. WORKING LIVE If insulating gloves or mats or both are chosen. The section covers: ✱ Important issues when working live. instruments and equipment for live work. operating rods. within the restrictions set down by the Regulation.3 Impor tant issues when working live 6. 6. 6. and ✱ Have skills and knowledge in the area of work. switchgear and earth switches via handles. ✱ The selection and use of tools. or near. This part includes the importance of testing to confirm correct connections (including polarity test) – to ensure electrical safety. The Regulation also has a number of requirements eg a safe system of work must exist before working live. they should be used in at least the following situations: ✱ Operating high voltage isolators. 57 .

though surrounding parts need not be live. In addition. burns sustained near these items can be worse because the objects retain heat and provide contact points for current to flow.2 Conductive materials Workers can be exposed to the hazards of electric shock. WORKING LIVE 58 Control measures chosen for live work should not rely solely on items such as flame retardant or flame resistant clothing and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). backup generators. these facilities should be disabled. such as concrete.3. arcing and explosion without making direct contact with exposed live parts. or both. ✱ Reducing the fault level eg performing the work out of hours when the supply can be fed from only one transformer or a generator. This may involve working live. The electric shock path to earth can be via conductive materials. timber with a high moisture content or water. and ✱ In situations where uninterruptible power supplies. Other materials can provide current paths for the electric shock. ✱ Using a safety switch (residual current device) eg testing an appliance. . such as watches and watchbands. auto-reclosing. Objects of this kind can result in electric shocks. Gases and liquids should be regarded as conductive materials. should not be worn when working near exposed live parts. Appropriate control measures can include: ✱ Isolating as many of the sources of electric potential as possible. 6. fault current. All materials should be regarded as conductive. or auto change over systems are installed. unless proved otherwise. Metallic personal items.6. Particular care should be taken when exposed live parts are near earthed situations.

WORKING LIVE Examples of other metal objects that should not be wor n when performing electrical work include: ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ Neck chains. you should work from a position where any contact with electricity would require a deliberate movement to touch energised parts or create a current path.6. is it preferred to use remote control facilities? 59 . If a circuit breaker has the facility to be remotely operated. Bracelets. Earrings. should be maintained. is operating a circuit breaker by standing at the unit acceptable. or. Rings. 6. ✱ When working in an awkward position – such as testing components towards the rear of a washing machine via the front panel eg in a laundromat – the work system. including body position.3 Work position To prevent electric shock. should be such that no electric shock path can be created. in the case of an emergency. including body position. For example. Adequate working clearance to allow safe access and egress from the work position. should be such that no electric shock path can be created. Examples: ✱ Choice of body position should be such that if you made an involuntary action such as sneezing. body piercing. and ✱ Per for ming phase sequencing or rotation testing on over head mains or at an underground pillar.3. and Metal spectacle frames. the preferred work position should be communicated to workers. the work system. you would not touch exposed live parts eg fault finding on a Programmable Logic Controller (PLC) whose inputs are next to live exposed parts.

4 Safety observer (electrical) A safety observer (electrical) must be used when per for ming live electrical work unless the work involves testing electrical equipment. Where the work has been assessed as high risk. ✱ The safety observer (electrical) should be able to communicate effectively with the worker or workers.6. Specialist equipment may be necessary in situations where there is a barrier to communication. ✱ A safety observer (electrical) should have the authority to stop the work before the risks become too high. ✱ Installing and replacing components at a switchboard. Examples of high risk work include: ✱ Fault finding at a switchboard that has a high prospective fault current level. ✱ The safety observer (electrical) should not have to observe more than one task at a time. ✱ Where the worker is in the ‘safety observer zone’ ie near the exclusion zone for exposed live parts. ✱ The safety observer (electrical) should not carry out any other work or function that compromises their role as a safety observer. and ✱ Performing complex fault finding. If a safety observer (electrical) is used as part of a risk management strategy. as required. The role is to warn the worker or workers of danger as well as to perform rescue and resuscitation. . a safety observer (electrical) should be used as one form of control measure unless the safe system of work specifically addresses the likelihood of inadvertent contact with exposed live parts through alter native measures. WORKING LIVE 60 6. and ✱ To meet an electrical safety obligation.3. ✱ A safety observer (electrical) should not be situated in the work basket of the elevating work platform16. 16 The term “elevating work platform” is defined in Appendix A. a safety observer (electrical) should not be regarded as the sole control measure to ensure electrical safety. the following should apply: ✱ The safety observer (electrical)’s role should be clearly communicated and understood.

WORKING LIVE 6.5 Emergency planning If a person sustains an injury due to electrical hazards.6. Barriers and signs may be designed. Processes and procedures that should be considered include: ✱ Response to high voltage incidents and injuries. After an electrical incident. 6. For example. and ✱ Response to low voltage incidents and injuries. unobstructed passage.4). However. rescue may be acceptable. 61 . In an effective safe system of work. or both to intrude into safe approach distances for exposed live high voltage. should a rescue require either the victim. It is crucial that the response be appropriate to electrical risk. These should include rescue procedures such as: • • • • • • Low voltage pole rescue.3. there is still a risk of injury because of the three common electrical hazards (refer to section 4. This should include forms of isolation and access. isolation and proving de-energised should be performed. Low voltage switchboard rescue. prompt and timely action can significantly reduce the injury’s severity. Quick action may even save a life. in a live low voltage situation. workers should be competent at reacting to electrical incidents to prevent injury or further injury.1. ✱ Ensure that access to and egress from the work location of live work allows for clear. and First aid including treatment of burns. Emergency actions should be taken that suit the work being done. Cardiopulmonary resuscitation. Hazards such as electric shock associated with working near exposed live parts can also be controlled using barriers and signs. Rescue and escape from an EWP. the rescuer. erected or installed to: ✱ Protect the electrical worker from making contact with live parts.6 Safety barriers and signs Safety barriers and signs can be used to control risks such as those mentioned in section B. Confined space rescue eg rescue from low voltage cable pits.3.

a dust coat or an incorrectly fitted face shield could trap the explosion rather than protect someone from it. 6.4 What to use to work safely – tools. PPE should be fit for purpose. • • Using non conductive footwear. maintenance and testing of PPE should be explained to users. With electrical work. inappropriately used or not fit for purpose can cause injuries. and contain no metallic threads or exposed conductive material eg zip or rivets in jeans. The clothing should have flame resistant or retardant properties eg cotton or wool. instruments and equipment used for electrical work 6. there is the added risk of electric shock or large releases of energy from arcing and explosion. legs and body. tools.6. WORKING LIVE 62 ✱ Warn others and direct them away from live parts.1 General In general industry. instruments and equipment that are poorly maintained. The correct application.4. The hierarchy lists personal protective equipment (PPE) as the last option or least preferred option. such as steel toe capped boots or shoes manufactured to a suitable standard. and Using insulating gloves. and ✱ Clearly designate the safe work area by defining the approach path to a piece of equipment. ✱ Be temporary or permanent. .7 Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Refer to section 4 for the hierarchy of risk controls. use.3. 6. Examples of PPE applications include: ✱ Reducing risks rather than compounding risks eg if an explosion occurs at thigh height that causes the energy vents upwards. In this situation. and ✱ Prevention or reduction of the effects of electric shock and burns may be controlled by: • Using clothing that covers the arms.

Otherwise. certain dangers can arise eg the insulating medium might conceal a mechanical defect that could cause an open circuit in the lead of a testing device. and ✱ Knowing what to do to ensure electrical safety when an inconclusive or incorrect result is obtained. instruments and equipment”. Workers should be competent in the use of the device. and Instruments and testing devices used for proving de-energised. ✱ Being able to determine. ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ Rescue and escape kits. The term. WORKING LIVE The tools. regular maintenance and inspection are required. lanyards and fall restraint devices. Harnesses.6. testing and faultfinding.8 for information about the general use of tools for electrical work. For example. by inspection. instruments and equipment used by electrical workers often have special design characteristics. Refer also to section B. that the device is safe for use eg the device is not damaged and is fit for purpose. Cable spiking or stabbing equipment. Insulating mats and covers. 63 . includes the following devices: ✱ Insulated hand tools where the insulation is relied upon as a control measure. Mechanical equipment such as serial hoists for line work. ✱ Understanding the limitations of the equipment eg when testing to prove an AC circuit is de-energised. many are insulated as a control measure. Operating rods. including measuring sticks. whether the device indicates the presence of hazardous levels of DC. However. “tools. ✱ Being aware of the electrical safety implications for others when the device is being used eg whether the device causes the electric potential of the earthing system to rise to a hazardous level. Ladders and pole platforms.2. Portable short circuits and earth devices. Safe use includes: ✱ Being able to use the device safely and in the manner for which it was intended.

2 Selection. cable cutters. crimpers. ✱ Industry groups. WORKING LIVE 64 6. Telescopic devices eg antennas. . Insulated tools eg screwdrivers. Rulers and tape measures. inspecting. testing. When working near exposed live parts or working live. the tools and equipment used should be non-conductive or insulated. dentists mirrors. and ✱ Electrical or hydraulic powered tools. At least the following issues are to be addressed: ✱ The device must be fit for purpose. since flame conducts electricity. and ✱ Fire extinguishers that contain conductive mediums such as water. ✱ Equipment and test instruments that are not able to be visually confirmed as functioning correctly must be tested at least every 6 months to ensure proper working order.6. ✱ National and international codes and standards such as those produced by: • • Standards Australia eg AS and AS/NZS publications. When selecting devices the following should be avoided: ✱ Flame producing devices. maintenance When selecting or maintaining tools. instruments and equipment. Examples include: ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ Torches. calibrating and maintaining these devices can be obtained from sources that include: ✱ Manufactures and suppliers. pliers. and International Electrotechnical Commission eg IEC publications. ✱ Repairs and maintenance should meet appropriate standards and manufacturer’s instructions. you should address a number of factors to ensure electrical safety. ✱ Equipment and test instruments that can be visually confirmed as functioning correctly should have visual confirmation of correct function each time before use. spanners. Appropriate guidance and standards for testing.4.

and ✱ To ensure electrical safety – the combination of leads and instrument used should be capable of withstanding the impulse voltages and fault current levels that could be experienced at the location. WORKING LIVE 6. and ✱ The work practices employed during use should not only be safe but in line with documented procedures. The relevant protective category – or Installation Category 17 of instrument. Type A probes 18 (leads) should be used for measuring supply voltages (415/240 V AC).4.6. 6.4.4 Instruments and test devices When selecting instruments and test devices. as appropriate. 65 . These documented procedures should address manufacturer’s instructions. 17 The term “Installation Category” is defined in Appendix A. Note: Installation Category is a safety focus and is not associated with instrument accuracy. 18 The term “Type A probe” is defined in Appendix A. The rating for test instruments and test probes used on 415/240V mains voltage equipment connected on the supply side of a main switchboard should be Installation Category III or IV. range and class of accuracy should be appropriate to both work and conditions.3 Use of instruments and test devices When using instruments and test devices. The Installation Category is an inherent safety design criterion. the work practice should include: ✱ Immediately before and after use – the device should be inspected and functional checks per for med to confir m that the device is operating correctly. the following should be addressed: ✱ The device’s function. device and leads – should be chosen as a control measure for impulse voltages and prospective fault currents.

but they should be fit for purpose.1 General When fault finding. portable pole platforms and scaffolds.1 for information on the sources of these hazards. a double probe voltmeter with a trailing earth lead is more appropriate. alternative measures should be taken.5 Testing and fault-finding – proving the work is safe 6. Fused leads or probes may be a suitable control measure. To control risks of this kind. consideration should be given to whether a single or double probe device is more suitable eg a proximity tester or a multimeter style.6. 6. or ✱ Using other appropriate means to ensure electrical safety.4. device and lead combination. If the combination of the probe type and installation category of the instrument is inadequate.3 must be in place. . These measures include: ✱ Obtaining a more suitable instrument.4). when measuring the voltage at a neutral link. WORKING LIVE 66 Therefore. the common electrical hazards are likely to be present (refer to section 4. Refer to section B.5. a safe system of live work as outlined in section 6.2 6. When selecting a voltage indicating device. workers who per form live testing or fault finding in switchboards should use at least Category III devices with Type A probes. or a combination of these. Consult section B. applying a potentially fatal test current 19. 19 The term “potentially fatal test current” is defined in Appendix A. For example.5 Ladders. However. testing.2. a proximity tester that has a self test facility and a fail-safe design may be appropriate to test to prove de-energised in some low voltage situations.

energising. testing. To ensure electrical safety. an employer or self-employed person should ensure that an electrical worker is assigned to ensuring electrical safety is maintained at all times. procedures for fault finding and testing should also address: ✱ Considering the characteristics of the tester/s to be used and any resultant effects. 67 . ✱ Proving the correct operation of testing devices. ✱ Giving clear instruction on what is seen as a conclusive test eg what constitutes correct connections (including polarity). when choosing a voltage indicating device to test at a low voltage switchboard. and ✱ Providing clear instruction on what is regarded as an inconclusive test. and ✱ Make sure the electrical work remains safely isolated until the matter is resolved. disconnected. WORKING LIVE Where a recognised test cannot or does not satisfactorily determine that parts are electrically safe – including proving that all connections are correct (including polarity) – or where any doubt exists. including technical limitations. disconnecting and rectifying. and made safe. If a test procedure is interrupted. the criteria for the inspections should be clearly identified. For example. the sequence of testing and confirmation should be restarted.6. An employer or self employed person should make sure a person is clearly responsible for the overall integrity of the electrical work and testing. both before and after each test. If the procedure includes a requirement for inspections. Resolution may take the form of further advice and assistance being received and acted on. an appropriate class of device with an appropriate inter nal impedance will ensure accurate and valid tests while maintaining electrical safety by not introducing hazardous currents and potentials into the earthing system. Where more than one electrical worker is involved in the process of installing. the following should apply: ✱ Ensure the electrical work or affected part of the electrical work is isolated.

5.2. or an open circuit neutral connection. Clear guidelines should be provided on which tester. 6. WORKING LIVE 68 Electrical workers should be regularly trained and assessed in the underpinning knowledge and practical aspects of testing across the range of variables the worker will encounter. and earth. . and ✱ On the low voltage distribution network – bonding a phase to earth instead of bonding the neutral to earth.5. such as taps and sinks. The same applies to any alterations or additions.2 Ensuring correct connections (including polarity) 6. The tests must be performed when any new work is energised. resulting in exposed conductive parts of an installation becoming energised. When an active and neutral are transposed in a Multiple Earthed Neutral (MEN) system. or combination of test instruments and equipment. Connections must be tested to confirm that they are correct.6. thus causing dangerous step and touch potentials at the base of a pole.1 Importance of testing for correct connections (including polarity) Failure to ensure correct connections (including polarity) can cause serious incidents and may result in severe and even fatal injuries. or both. the problem arises because the main switch is in the neutral and at least one active is not switched. In this instance. to use including accessories such as trailing earth leads. such as taps. the earthed metal work. Examples of hazardous situations resulting from incorrect connections (including polarity) include: ✱ Transposing an active and neutral. Testing to prove correct connections (including polarity) greatly reduces the risk of death or severe injury associated with incorrect connections (including polarity). An error of this kind will usually mean the supply cannot be isolated to an installation via the main switch. dangerous potentials are created between metal work. In this situation. become live ie there is a significant potential to earth.

The minimum steps should include proving the correct electrical relationship exists between the: ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ Active/s. ✱ Service connections to street light standards are made. ✱ Connections to transformers or generators are made or remade. 69 . bonding conductors or both. ✱ A new low voltage service is installed. 6.3 Procedure for ensuring correct connections (including polarity) Test procedures should be properly documented and effectively communicated to the appropriate persons. Neutral. ✱ Items of electrical equipment. 6. WORKING LIVE Using the correct test procedures will ensure the electrical work is safe and will protect the worker. are connected to supply. and Independent earth used for testing.6.2.5. such as stoves and hot water systems. ✱ Low voltage bridges are connected or reconnected on low voltage mains. other workers and the public during and after testing. Earthing. or ✱ A distribution system is initially energised or when any addition or alteration to the system could affect electrical safety. ✱ New consumers’ mains or sub mains are installed.2 Situations when testing correct connections (including polarity) are required Examples of when tests of correct connections (including polarity) are required include when: ✱ Electrical installation or repair work is connected to supply. ✱ Consumers’ mains or sub mains have been repaired or replaced.5. ✱ An existing service is disconnected20 or reconnected. remade or altered.2. 20 The term “disconnected” is defined in Appendix A.

or ✱ Assuming that because a protective device has not operated. For example. the generator – and the installation require testing because incorrect connection/s may exist at either or both locations. .5.6. an indication should be given as to what the test is proving. WORKING LIVE 70 Both the source of supply and the electrical work may require testing. the potential of the earthing system may rise to a level that causes an electrical hazard. if a three-phase generator is to supply an installation. The installation earthing system should not be used for tests to earth unless the insulation between the neutral and earthing system has been proven acceptable. 6. Examples of unacceptable test methods include: ✱ Relying on motor or meter rotation or both as a reliable test. The electrical worker responsible for ensuring correct connections (including polarity) must be competent in confirming connections are correct. Within the test procedure. An independent earth may be used. For example. is the test purely a ‘polarity’ test or does it include other measures such as proving that there is no alternative source of supply? Installations should not be connected to de-energised low voltage sources. the source – in this instance.2. In this situation.4 Precautions when testing for correct connections (including polarity) It is not acceptable to rely on equipment function as a means of testing connections. The electrical worker following the procedure should be able to clearly identify exactly what he or she is testing for. the impedance of the testing device directly affects the level of potential rise. The installation earthing should not be used because. the connections are correct. as the test is performed.

the electric line. pillar. the electrical part. for an electrical part means a person who: ✱ Has enough technical knowledge and experience to do the work that involves contact with. Under an access permit or authority. pole. 71 . surrounding or supporting a wire or conductor. switch. or is authorised to act on behalf of the person in control of the electrical part. • An air break. means something ordinarily found in association with the electric line. covering. pipe. especially for the purpose of protecting.APPENDIX A – MEANING OF TERMS USED IN THIS CODE APPENDIX A – MEANING OF TERMS USED IN THIS CODE Access permit or authority means a document that forms part of a safe system to work. motion or another form of energy or is substantially changed in its electrical character. insulating or supporting. Examples of associated equipment – • A bracket. for an electric line. frame. casing. earths and short circuits should not be removed. and ✱ Has been approved by the person in control of the electrical part to do the work that involves contact with. duct. the bulb or tube. is an appliance. An appliance is a device that consumes electricity at a voltage greater than extra low voltage and in which the electricity is converted into heat. Associated equipment. tower or tube enclosing. Chief Executive means the Director-General of the Department of Industrial Relations. coating. circuit breaker. transformer or other apparatus connected to a wire or conductor. insulator. At least one set of earths and short circuits must be applied before an access permit or authority is issued. the electrical part. is not an appliance. or being near to. including its bulb or tube. Authorised person. or supporting the operation of. taken alone. or being near to. Although a light fitting. to provide electrically safe access to high voltage parts.

The per for mance of electrical work as a result of which an exposed wire is left in circumstances in which it can be energised by the operation of a switch or circuit breaker or the insertion of a fuse. ✱ the performance of electrical work by a person if. or through all of these methods. Disconnected means that the parts are not connected to an electrical source. ✱ the per for mance of electrical work by a person not authorised under an electrical work licence to perform the work. as a result of the per formance of the work. if – • • the circumstances involve high voltage electrical equipment. the person would not have been electrically safe. the person does not receive a shock or injury. the person would not have been electrically safe because of circumstances involving high voltage electrical equipment. . isolating. a person or property is not electrically safe. and despite the coming into existence of the circumstances. ✱ the coming into existence of the following circumstances – • • if a person had been at a particular place at a particular time. A part that is disconnected may still require discharging to remove all electric and other energy. ✱ an event that involves electrical equipment and in which significant property damage is caused directly by electricity or originates from electricity. Examples for the above paragraph – • • The connection of electrical equipment to a source of supply involving incorrect polarity or other incorrect connection. Disconnection may be achieved by de-energising.APPENDIX A – MEANING OF TERMS USED IN THIS CODE 72 A dangerous electrical event is any of the following – ✱ the coming into existence of circumstances in which a person is not electrically safe. separating or breaking connections. ✱ the discovery by a licensed electrical worker of electrical equipment that has not been marked as required under this Act.

conductor. ✱ In the event that the circuit becomes energized. hydraulic pressure in a system.g.APPENDIX A – MEANING OF TERMS USED IN THIS CODE De-energise means the process of disconnecting lines or apparatus from all sources of electrical energy usually by the process of switching. refer to earths and short circuits. Earthing and short-circuiting form one part of a system to create an electrically safe environment. or energy stored in a battery Earthed means electrically connected to the general mass of earth. Discharged also means stored energy has been released e. The use of earths and short circuits should be part of a safe system of work on high voltage parts. or both. to cause the operation of protection equipment to trip the supply. material. applying earths and short circuits to high voltage parts before gaining access. a cathodic protection system. portable earthing devices (PED). appliance. supplying. when and why the earths and short circuits are applied deter mines whether they are designated as operator or working – earths and short circuits. earth switches etc. The purpose of earthing and shortcircuiting is: ✱ To safely discharge induced or residual voltage. Discharged means connected to the general mass of the earth in such a manner as to remove any residual electrical energy e. insulator. or that forms part of. 73 . earths. cable. transfor ming or transmitting electricity at a voltage greater than extra low voltage.g. De-energised does not mean isolated or discharged. a closing spring in a circuit breaker. fitting. Who. meter or wire – ✱ used for controlling. Earths. or ✱ that is. and ✱ To limit the rise in potential difference at the work area. Earths and short circuits means portable earthing devices. Electrical equipment is any apparatus. generating. or ✱ operated by electricity at a voltage greater than extra low voltage.

Examples of things that are not prevented from being electrical equipment – • Interior lighting or a socket outlet in a caravan. and ✱ the items do not include items that are works of an electricity entity. and ✱ electricity can be supplied to the group from the works of an electricity entity or from a generating source. Refer also to section 69 of the Regulation (as detailed in section 3 of this Code) for further infor mation on electric motors for ming part of vehicles. insulator. or ✱ its source of electricity is a unit of the vehicle that provides propulsion for the vehicle.APPENDIX A – MEANING OF TERMS USED IN THIS CODE 74 However. appliance. An item of electrical equipment can be part of more than 1 electrical installation. fitting. meter or wire forming part of a vehicle if – ✱ it forms part of a unit of the vehicle that provides propulsion for the vehicle. a group of items of electrical equipment is an electrical installation only if – ✱ all the items are permanently electrically connected together. • A refrigeration unit in a food delivery vehicle operating at low voltage from a source separate from the propulsion unit for the vehicle. . if powered from a battery charged by the engine that drives the vehicle or by the vehicle’s movement. if the lighting or outlet is operated by a low voltage generating set or connected to low voltage supply. The interior lighting system of a vehicle. cable. However. material. conductor. An electrical installation is a group of items of electrical equipment. “electrical equipment” does not include any apparatus. Ignition spark plugs of a motor vehicle. Examples of things that are not electrical equipment – • • • The headlights of a vehicle.

Examples of an electrical installation – • The switchboard. computer. wiring. land or water. lighting. lamp. socket outlets and other electrical equipment permanently connected for a residential unit complex. lighting. works of an electricity entity or a cathodic protection system is located. lighting. wiring. Examples of things that are not electric lines – • • A cord for connecting an air conditioning unit. 75 . Electrical place means a location where an electrical installation. or supplying electricity at a voltage greater than extra low voltage. wiring. The electrical installation for the shopping centre generally includes the electrical installations for the individual shops. electrical equipment. or ✱ a wire or conductor within the internal structure of a building. • • The switchboard.APPENDIX A – MEANING OF TERMS USED IN THIS CODE For the permanently electrically connected items above – ✱ an item of electrical equipment connected to electricity by a plug and socket outlet is not permanently electrically connected. an “electric line” does not include – ✱ a wire or conductor directly used in converting electricity into another form of energy. • The switchboard. lighting. The electrical installation for the residential unit complex generally includes the electrical installations for the individual residential units. television or toaster to a supply of electricity. socket outlets and other electrical equipment permanently connected for a house or residential unit. The switchboard. socket outlets and other electrical equipment per manently connected for a shop in a shopping centre. place. lighting. However. transforming. wiring. and ✱ connection achieved through using works of an electricity entity must not be taken into consideration for deciding whether items of electrical equipment are electrically connected. • The switchboard. A power or lighting circuit within a building. wiring. including a premises. An electric line is a wire or conductor or associated equipment used for transmitting. socket outlets and other electrical equipment permanently connected within a caravan. socket outlets and other electrical equipment permanently connected for a shopping centre.

means the person or property is electrically safe. testing. and ✱ for the way electrical equipment. that all persons and property are free from electrical risk from the operation or use of the equipment. and ✱ for the way a business or undertaking is conducted. Replacing a low voltage electrical component of a washing machine. that all persons are free from electrical risk from the installing or repairing of the equipment or installation. shock or injury caused directly by electricity or originating from electricity. altering. or loss or damage caused directly by electricity or originating from electricity. and ✱ for the way electrical work is performed. the risk to the property of – • • damage caused by a cathodic protection system. that all persons are free from electrical risk from the performance of the work. for a person or property. constructing. that all persons are free from electrical risk from the conduct of the business or undertaking. or ✱ in relation to property. Installing electrical equipment into an installation coupler or interconnecter. repairing. Electrical work is the manufacturing. removing. . that all persons and property are free from electrical risk from the equipment or installation. and ✱ for electrical equipment or an electrical installation. and ✱ for the way electrical equipment or an electrical installation is installed or repaired. or replacing of electrical equipment. Examples of electrical work – • • • • Installing low voltage electrical wiring in a building.APPENDIX A – MEANING OF TERMS USED IN THIS CODE 76 Electrical risk means – ✱ in relation to a person. installing. that the person or property is free from electrical risk. Maintaining an electricity entity’s overhead distribution system. maintaining. Electrical safety. Electrically safe means – ✱ for a person or property. an electrical installation or the works of an electricity entity are operated or used. the risk to the person of death. installation or works.

✱ assembling. the following are not “electrical work” – ✱ installing or removing electrical equipment by connecting it to electricity. ✱ building. for ensuring that – • • the work is done safely and competently. under the supervision of an electricity entity. if – • • • the channels are not intended to be earthed.APPENDIX A – MEANING OF TERMS USED IN THIS CODE However. Examples for the paragraph above – • • Repairing hydraulic components attached to an electric motor. making. Replacing the bulb in a light fitting. and are detailed in written form. and arrangements are in place. ✱ building or repairing ducts. an overhead electric line on structures that do not already carry an energised overhead electric line. or disconnecting it from electricity. cutting or sealing underground cables that are part of the works of an electricity entity before the initial connection of the cables to an electricity source. conduits or troughs (“channels”) where electrical wiring will be or is installed. 77 . by a plug and socket outlet. Replacing a drive belt on a washing machine. ✱ replacing a component forming part of electrical equipment if the electrical equipment has been designed so that the component is readily and safely able to be replaced by a person without electrical knowledge or skill. and wiring installed in the channels is not energised. ✱ repairing or replacing non-electrical components of electrical equipment. ✱ laying. if that is the principal manufacturing process at the workplace. and the equipment is tested to ensure compliance with relevant standards. modifying or repairing electrical equipment in a workplace registered under the Workplace Health and Safety Act 1995. Examples for the paragraph above – • • Replacing a fuse. and the work is done under the supervision of a person licensed to perform electrical installation work.

The phenomenon causes higher than normal system voltages on the high and low voltage systems. such as an iron cored transformer. maintaining or recovering an overhead electric line that is part of the works of an electricity entity.g. ✱ altering. Fault duration means the time which fault current may flow before being cleared by the primary protection of the power system operating correctly. if the work is performed under the entity’s supervision and – • if the line is not on supports supporting another electric line – the line has been isolated from an electricity source so that the closure of a switch cannot energise the section of the line where work is being done. Ferro-resonance – Ferro-resonance can be described as a voltage multiplication circuit on a power system. . e. scissor device. or 120V or less ripple-free DC. ✱ work performed by a person on electrical equipment if – • • the electrical equipment is not energised. or • if the line is on supports supporting another electric line – both lines have been isolated from an electricity source so that the closure of a switch cannot energise the section of the line where the work is being done or an adjacent section of the other line. Ferro-resonance occurs when a modest sized capacitance is either in series or in parallel. with non-linear inductance. and it is necessary for the person to perform the work to meet the eligibility requirements for an electrical work licence. Elevating work platform means a telescoping device. equipment and materials to and from. and (ii) the work is prescribed under a regulation for this paragraph.APPENDIX A – MEANING OF TERMS USED IN THIS CODE 78 ✱ recovering underground cables that are part of the works of an electricity entity after disconnection from an electricity source. repairing. or articulating device or any combination of those devices used to move and position personnel. 700 volts phase to phase on the low voltage system. or at work locations above or below the support surface. Energise means energise by electricity. Extra low voltage means voltage of 50V or less AC RMS.

and single-phase switching occurs. having regard to – ✱ likelihood of harm. Impulse withstand voltage: 1500V. picks. it should be interpreted as meaning “includes. Examples include operation of a high voltage fuse or asynchronous operation of single-phase high voltage switching devices.) The applicable Installation Categories are outlined below: ✱ Installation Category I relates to signal level. telecommunications. electronic and similar equipment. “include”. Installation Category (instruments) means the fault level and voltage impulse level that instrument is designed to withstand. Impulse withstand voltage: 2500V. and. Hand excavation means using tools such as shovels. (Refer to international standards IEC 61010-1 and IEC 61010-2-031 for further information. mattocks. main switchboards etc. crowbars. but is not limited to”.APPENDIX A – MEANING OF TERMS USED IN THIS CODE In power systems. such as a drop out fuse unit or some ring main units. portable equipment etc. or very light load on the transformer. ✱ Installation Category II relates to the local level. Impulse withstand voltage: 4000V. Free from electrical risk. means that the electrical risk to the person or property is as low as reasonably achievable. Include Where the word. appliances. and ✱ likely severity of harm. ✱ There is either no load. equipment sub circuits. Even when hand excavating caution must be exercised when working close to live cables. High voltage means voltage greater than low voltage. special equipment or parts of equipment. for a person or property. Hand excavation does not include the use of equipment such as jackhammers. 79 . ✱ A combination of the capacitance and inductance exists. is used in this Code. ✱ Installation Category III relates to the distribution level. ferro-resonance is most commonly found in the following conditions: ✱ A three-phase distribution transfor mer is energised via an underground cable of moderate length.

secondary circuits.APPENDIX A – MEANING OF TERMS USED IN THIS CODE 80 ✱ Installation Category IV relates to the primary supply level. switching. discharging. for an electrical part means a person who is acting under the supervision of an authorised person for the electrical part. The term applies to: ✱ The operation of high voltage. Isolated means disconnected from all possible sources of supply and rendered incapable of being made live without premeditated and deliberate operation. . Isolation and access should be part of safe system of work. including a neutral conductor and conductive parts connected to a neutral conductor. proving de-energised. or one of many points. Isolation and access means the process of fully or partly. isolating. Examples of how isolation can be achieved is by opening isolators. installing other precautions. Energised) means connected to a source of electrical supply or subject to hazardous induced or capacitive voltages. Under the MEN system live does not apply to the following: ✱ Earthing conductors. deenergising. inhibiting the operation of a mechanism by locking. Isolation involves the use of suitable warning or safety signs and involve locks. Generally. A suitable warning safety sign must be attached. direct current or both. used to isolate electrical parts. ✱ The MEN connection and the neutral bar or link which the MEN connection is made. racking out circuit breakers. Live (Alive. rendering mechanisms inoperative or a combination of these. applying earths and short circuits. “live” refers to a conductor or conductive part intended to be energised in nor mal use. Instructed person. or a combination of these measures. cable systems etc fixed installation. Isolation point means the point. . removing fuses or links.g. the issuing of permits or authorities and the reversal of this process. and ✱ Alternating current. overhead lines. low voltage and associated circuits e.

and any article designed for use as a component in. Low voltage means voltage greater than extra low voltage. but not more than 1 000V AC RMS or 1 500V ripple-free DC. The threshold of let go should be considered the maximum value of current to flow through the human body before a significant risk of ventricular fibrillation exists. equipment or appliance and includes earth moving machines and hoists. or both. or as an accessory to. Permit or authority means an access or a test permit or authority. any machinery. Potentially fatal test current means current used as part of a test where the current is greater than or equal to 10 mA AC or 300 mA DC. Therefore. A neutral should be considered (and treated) as a live conductor.” described in AS 3859 The Effects of Current Passing Through The Human Body. Must Where the word “must” is used in this Code. 81 . it reflects the fact that a mandatory requirement exists in the Act or Regulation. ✱ Conductive supports and enclosures associated with unprotected consumers mains that are earthed in accordance with AS/NZS 3000. if tests use currents above the potentially lethal test current. Plant includes any machinery. equipment and appliance. which is maintained at an intermediate and approximately uniform potential in respect of the active or outer conductors. These values are based on the maximum value of current at which a person can let go or “threshold of let go.APPENDIX A – MEANING OF TERMS USED IN THIS CODE ✱ The sheath of a Mineral Insulated Metal Sheathed (MIMS) cable and associated conductive fittings used as a combined neutral and protective earthing conductor fittings used as a combined neutral and protective earthing conductor in an Earth Sheath Return (ESR) system. or the conductor of a two-wire system that is earthed at its origin. consideration should be given to the implementation of effective control measures. Neutral means the conductor of a three-wire or multi-wire system.

Step and touch potential means step voltage or touch voltage. Should Where the word “should” is used in this Code. via a rope. or ✱ a person receives a shock or injury from electricity. By placing a mechanical load as close to the head of the pole as practical. in the incident – ✱ a person is killed by electricity. STEP POTENTIAL THIS PERSON WOULD BE EXPOSED TO 90 VOLTS STEP POTENTIAL 240V TOUCH POTENTIAL THIS PERSON WOULD BE EXPOSED TO 60 VOLTS 240V TOUCH POTENTIAL 240V 180V 120V 90V 60V 240V 180V 120V 90V 60V Figure 2 – Examples of step potential and touch potential . and is treated for the shock or injury by or under the supervision of a doctor. Refer to Figure 2. it should be interpreted as meaning a requirement which needs to be equalled or exceeded so that an obligation to be discharged. whether or not the person is treated for the shock or injury by or under the supervision of a doctor. or ✱ a person receives a shock or injury from electricity at high voltage. If this Code states that something should be done. the requirement is to do what the Code says or do it in a manner which is equal or better (electrically safer) than the Code. or both. A serious electrical incident is an incident involving electrical equipment if. the test should indicate whether the pole is inherently sound.APPENDIX A – MEANING OF TERMS USED IN THIS CODE 82 Rope test (rope pull test) means a test performed on wood and steel poles.

what work an apprentice or restricted electrical worker is permitted to perform. ✱ Statutory compliance e. to ensure risks to people and property are eliminated or at least minimised. Each switching sheet should have a unique reference and should list a process of isolation and access step by step. Touch voltage means the prospective or open circuit voltage that may appear between any point of contact with conductive parts (that are located within 2. and Implementation of a safe system of work. and ✱ General supervision means supervision where the worker does not require the constant attendance of the supervisor. Switching sheet means a document that is part of a safe system of work. the two distinct styles of supervision are described as: Direct supervision means supervision occurs at all times on a direct and constant basis. including trainees and apprentices.APPENDIX A – MEANING OF TERMS USED IN THIS CODE Step voltage means the prospective or open circuit voltage that may appear between any two points (1 metre apart) on the surface of the ground.4 metres of the ground) and any point on the surface of the ground with a horizontal distance of one metre from the vertical projection of the point of contact with the conductive part. compliance with AS/NZS 3000. 83 . Generally. Supervision of electrical work includes: ✱ Health and safety matters.g.g. auditing should not be seen as interchangeable with supervision. The Regulation means the Electrical Safety Regulation 2002. Supervision means the overseeing of workers. While a supervisor may perform audits. ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ Technical aspects e. The Act means the Electrical Safety Act 2002.

including transformers and switches. and electric line associated equipment. a fault not directly associated with the line under access can cause a dangerous voltage rise on the substation earth grid. or ✱ recklessly. Example of what is not works of an electricity entity – • Appliances or fixed wiring in an electricity entity’s workshop or offices. or ✱ with gross negligence. where it can create a hazard to workers on the site. transform.APPENDIX A – MEANING OF TERMS USED IN THIS CODE 84 Transferred earth potential Although a line may be ‘“earthed’” there may be a dangerous voltage or potential between the line and the earth point. (Refer to international standards IEC 61010-1 and IEC 61010-2-031 for further information. at the work site. Example of works of an electricity entity – • An overhead distribution system of a distribution entity. These probe assemblies may contain passive components such as fuses. controlled or operated by the entity to generate. For example. where a line is under access at a remote substation. transmit or supply electricity. including a concrete pole or a steel tower. Type A probe means probes suitable for application to low voltage and high voltage non attenuating non voltage dividing probe assemblies that are rated for direct connection to voltages exceeding 33V RMS (root mean square) but not exceeding 63 kV.) Wilfully means – ✱ intentionally. That voltage rise is transferred through the line to the work site. . Works. of an electricity entity. means the electrical equipment.

particularly neutrals. but the following list will help. preventing electric shocks is a major part of discharging electrical safety obligations. The changing earth potential can be due to a number of causes including: a high impedance retur n path to the low voltage distribution neutral. faults on other parts of the power system or lightning strikes. ✱ Voltages caused by static electricity. Identifying other sources of electric shock can be more difficult. These conductive surfaces are a source of potential that can cause an electric shock. 85 . persons and other conductive surfaces nearby. leakage or discharge. ✱ The potential (voltage) between parts of the earth in Multiple Earthed Neutral (MEN) systems can change. The risks associated with this hazard are significant. damp situations. neutral and earth where there is metalwork. ✱ Voltages across undischarged capacitors. Sources include: ✱ Voltages across open switch contacts eg voltage across a light switch on an incandescent lighting circuit or the voltage across a bus tie where one side is de-energised.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N APPENDIX B – FURTHER INFORMATION 1 Common sources of electrical hazards 1. sometimes causing electric shocks. and ✱ Voltages between phases. In managing risks associated electrical work.1 Identifying sources of electric shock Contact with electric potentials is one of the common hazards identified in Section 4. or lightning. Potential sources of electric shock include: ✱ Voltages between phases and between phases and neutral. ✱ Voltages on disconnected conductors.4 in the electrical industry.

Working on transducer circuits when other AC and DC circuits are present. Transferred earth potentials often result from system faults. DC on AC circuits. ✱ Voltages between parts. ✱ Faulty equipment eg the frame of faulty equipment may become energized. and Working on a power system with multiple circuits that may be of multiple potentials. and Back Electro Magnetic Forces (EMF) from collapsing magnetic fields or rotating machinery.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N 86 ✱ Induced voltages from sources other than the circuit being worked on eg nearby circuits or radio frequency transmitters. including current transformers. commonly referred to as incorrect polarity. ✱ Voltages across the secondary terminals of transformers. Harmonics eg 3rd harmonic 150 Hz in neutrals and earths where there is a large fluorescent light load. . ✱ Step and touch potentials and transferred earth potentials. ✱ Incorrect wiring connections eg transposing active and neutral. ✱ Voltages on the circuit being worked on from other sources including: • • • • • • • Illegal connections or reconnections. or voltages between different earthing systems. Motor generators or alternators. or open circuited parts of one earth system. ✱ Voltages from sources near the work being per formed. Uninterruptible Power Supplies (UPS) and backup supplies. Examples include: • • • • Working on a remote area power supply where both AC and DC voltages may be present. Repairing lights on a shop facia when overhead power lines are nearby. AC on DC circuits.

2 Tripping of supply on powerlines If contact is made with powerlines.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N 1. Circuits of different voltages touching each other eg HV contacting LV circuits. ✱ Abnormal conditions on circuits such as: • • • Lightning striking mains. explosions and faults which cause burns include: ✱ Materials providing a conductive path between sources of potential eg uninsulated tools falling across bus bars. Workers should be protected from the effects of burns. if the fault current is low. explosions and electrical faults can cause burns. twice the peakto-peak voltage may be imposed. In fact. For example. and High voltage in the secondary circuit of a current transformer if an open circuit occurs when current is flowing in the primary circuit. 87 . it may reclose and energise the fault again. Depending on the voltage and type of protection. explosion or fires Arcs. if the waveforms are 180 o out of phase. supply will not be disconnected immediately. ✱ Abnormally high voltages when synchronising different supplies. 1.3 Working near sources of arcing. the supply may not trip at all. there is an inbuilt delay as long as a number of seconds before disconnection occurs. and • Restrike can occur if capacitors are energised. ✱ Voltage multiplication effects such as: • Ferro-resonance where the capacitive and inductive components of underground cables and transfor mers can significantly increase voltages when single-phasing occurs. Examples of triggers for arc. de-energised and re-energised in rapid succession. Even if an overhead feeder does trip.

This causes additional damage. The consequences of arcs. The level of electrical energy released can equal 20 times the rated supply current. circuit protection may not operate to protect a person from electric shock. cross linked polyethylene (XLPE). as well as injury from flying debris or dislodged components. Protection systems should ensure that these high fault currents only flow briefly. often in emergencies. 21 There are numerous insulating mediums in use that should be considered. melt metallic switchboard cubicles.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N 88 ✱ Leakage or electrical discharge causing insulation to be compromised eg a combination of a build up of contaminants on insulators and wet weather or tracking through air voids in pitch filled insulating chambers. electrical workers may be exposed to unsafe atmospheres. and ✱ Failure of insulating mediums21. cause severe burns and flash burns to the face and eyes. 1. vulcanised insulating rubber (VIR). Toxic gases and lack of oxygen can cause illness and death. During the time that it takes to clear the high fault current. When high fault currents are present. vacuum. explosions and electrical faults are compounded by high fault currents. However. air. cable oil. magnetic forces between the conductors can be high enough to cause the conductor supports to mechanically fail. polyvinylchloride (PVC). the arcs produced have enough energy to cause an explosion. .4 Working in unsafe atmospheres After faults and fires. General Workplace Health and Safety control measures should be used in these situations. sulphur hexaflouride. epoxy compounds and resins. arcing or explosions. The potential for injury is extreme because of the rapid release of electrical energy. transformer oil. zellamite. when high fault currents are present. Some of the mediums include. pitch compounds.

✱ The inter-core capacitive effects of long multi-phase cables. to intrude into minimum safe approach distances. Further information can be obtained from the Queensland Fire and Rescue Authority via the web at www. 1. ✱ Insulation and equipment failing or partially breaking down. Typically. something a person may be holding or something a person is in contact with.5 Isolation and access Hazards identified in section 4. ✱ Natural elements such as lightning or wind causing static charges.qld. 89 . overhead mains to clash or a high voltage circuit to fall onto a low voltage circuit. and wet chemical should not be used as they significantly increase the risk of electric shock. Hazard sources involving isolation and access include: ✱ Correctly isolating supply but not discharging residual energy eg a capacitive charge may be present in power supplies. single-phase motors. ✱ Instructions or markings on the parts being inadequate.au. ✱ Another person energising circuits while a worker is working on them. ✱ Earth connection failing to stop an electric shock in earthed conductive parts when step and touch potentials exist. ✱ Using equipment not designed for or capable of an operation eg opening a “no load – bus tie” under load conditions or relying on an open circuit breaker as an isolation point.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N The method of extinguishing fires should be addressed. foam. or a vehicle hitting a pole. ✱ Changes to wiring not being reflected in drawings ie the drawings are not “as built”. incorrect or both.4. ✱ Carrying out the task causes a person.fire.gov. ✱ A power system conducting fault current or being subject to high inrush currents.1 should be addressed in the context of isolation and access. or high power factor fluorescent fittings. carbon dioxide or powder type devices are used against electrical fires. Extinguishers such as water. An example: a live control or supervision circuit being present though the drawing indicates otherwise.

However. ✱ Application of the short circuit portion of portable earthing devices prior to the earth tail being connected to the earth. ✱ The threshold value (lowest level of indication or reading) of a test device causing a misleading interpretation of a test to prove deenergised. grid or temporary electrode that the earth from the earths and short circuits relies upon in a situation where a single phase becomes energised. ✱ Application of earthing and short circuiting devices that depend on a conductive path through a fuse or a circuit breaker that is not fit for purpose.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N 90 ✱ If there has been an error in wiring – opening the isolator may not de-energise the switchboard eg if incorrect connection (incorrect polarity) occurred in the service to an installation. ✱ Inadvertently disabling an interlock while performing a task eg in a switchboard with an integrated circuit breaker. does not mean that low voltage and direct current voltages are absent. Depending on the device used. Most RMUs are configured in such a way that the earth switch earths the cable. the operator accidentally moving the isolator into the earthed position. ✱ Ineffective connection to the general mass of the earth eg the electrode. isolator and earth switch. it is possible that the worker would be earthing and short circuiting a live circuit. opening the main switch will open circuit the neutral rather than the active. In this situation. an indication that parts are not energised. ✱ When applying a set of portable earths and short circuits – accidentally or inadvertently making contact with live parts. in a high voltage situation. the worker assumes that the earth switch can be closed because the isolator is open. If this occurs. ✱ Intentionally disabling an interlock to per form a task eg opening the shutter of a “rackable” circuit breaker test to prove deenergised in the orifice. not the busbar. the worker is using a device that is conducting fault current. . The worker correctly observes that the isolator is open. ✱ A combination of poor direction and insufficient knowledge eg a worker is instructed to apply a set of earths and short circuits at a Ring Main Unit (RMU).

pits and underground ducts Sources of electrical hazards when working in and around trenches. contact between the earthed connector and a low voltage phase can cause an electric shock. For example. pits and underground ducts include: ✱ Earthed situations in which an electric shock path is created when exposed live parts and conductive materials are present at the same time. even when working on high voltage. in a Common Multiple Earthed Neutral (CMEN) area. If the parts are energised. Examples of suitable methods include: ✱ Per forming electrical and associated work only on de-energised parts. For example. and ✱ Exposed live parts. the worker can draw the arc from one phase to the other.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N ✱ Arcing and splattering associated with the application of earths and short circuits causing a hazard. An effective safe system of work should address hazards of this kind. and 91 . and ✱ A potential electric shock path existing once the earth tail is connected to earth. ✱ Spark generations in an explosive atmosphere eg presence of LP gas. ✱ Using work methods that remove the risk of an earthed situation eg using mats and eliminating or avoiding liquids. ✱ Damage of live cable with excavation or hole boring equipment. causing a phase to phase fault. Examples of conductive materials include metal pipes and liquids such as storm water or sewerage. 2 Other electrical hazards to be addressed 2. an electrical worker may be required to inspect and repair a damaged underground cable.1 Working in and around trenches. A worker may touch another live part and the earthed connector at the same time. The arcing or splattering may result from using the device in situations that range from energised conductors to residual energy such as capacitance.

portable pole platforms Work within the electrical industry requires extensive use of ladders. scaffolds and similar equipment – workers are more likely to touch open wiring such as overhead lines. scaffolds and similar equipment. ✱ In cases where lines are carrying large currents – conductive scaffolds becoming subject to induction.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N 92 ✱ If exposed parts of cables are present – maintaining safe approach distances until you can deter mine whether the cable is high voltage or low voltage. Some high voltage cables are oil filled.2 Working with ladders. and ✱ When using ladders. If it is difficult to identify. you will encounter the three common electrical hazards from a number of sources including: ✱ A conductive device such as an aluminium ladder creating an electric shock path eg an electric shock path may be created when an electrical worker investigates a faulty light circuit if the metal frame of a suspended ceiling is energised and a conductive ladder is used. . A cable that is leaking oil or gas should be treated as a high voltage cable. some are filled with gas. 2. scaffolds. Construction of high voltage cables varies. you should treat the cable as live high voltage. and others rely on insulation only. ✱ Moving a portable scaffold and damaging insulation when the scaffold strikes conductors or leads. ✱ In switchrooms and switchyards – conductive devices such as aluminium ladders and scaffolds creating electric shock paths and current paths to earth eg a metal wire reinforced ladder causing a fault to ground if the ladder touches a live 33 kV busbar. When using these items. ✱ If live work is being performed from a ladder – the ladder slipping and causing the worker to touch exposed live parts eg grabbing a mains box. ✱ An incident happens while work is being performed de-energised near exposed live parts eg wind blowing an extension ladder into nearby live mains such as overhead power lines.

3. Design and use of the portable platform should ensure that an operator does not receive an electric shock when operating the device correctly.1 Scope This section provides electrical safety information for electrical workers when using Elevating Work Platforms (EWP). and Restraining ladders using head ropes or footropes. eg non-conductive ladders. It outlines hazards and risks associated with the use of an EWP only in an electrical context and does not cover general safe operation. or both.3 Working with elevating work platforms (EWP) 2. a safe system of work should be used. consideration should be given to using devices that can be safely attached to the structure eg wood or concrete or both. control measures such as de-energising. Nearby exposed live parts. Depending on the construction of the scaffold.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N To control situations of this kind. such equipment should not be the only control measure used for live work under a safe system of work. 2. ✱ Using portable pole platfor ms that are fit for purpose. However. using a safety observer (electrical) or a combination of these should be addressed. ✱ Identifying if there are nearby exposed live parts. ✱ Employing work practices such as: • • • Two or more people carrying long devices in switchyards and switchrooms in a position below shoulder height. fitting covers. including scissor lift and boom type machines. Two people handling extension ladders in windy conditions. you may have to bond a number of sections to ensure an equipotential state. When selecting a portable pole platform. 93 . and ✱ If conductive scaffolding is used within high voltage enclosures or in situations where there is induction – bonding the structure to the earthing system. Effective control measures within this system of work should include: ✱ Using equipment that is fit for purpose.

2. any mechanical failure of the EWP or loss of stability resulting in contact with exposed live parts. a risk assessment should consider whether the EWP’s insulation is capable of protecting a person from a current path through the machine.3. As the worker in the platform’s basket moves in the traveling end of the machine. passers by can receive electric shocks. if you are per for ming live work in the basket of an insulated EWP.. ✱ Working near exposed live parts and poor judgement of distance. This may result in an unsafe electrical environment where another person may accidentally touch the live vehicle while standing on the ground. ✱ Live exposed power lines on the ground as a result of pole failure or broken wires. it is still possible to receive an electric shock. The insulation does not protect a person from electric shock if it is possible for him/her to simultaneously touch any two parts with different electric potentials. Sources of hazards associated with EWPs used for electrical and associated work include: ✱ Contacting exposed live parts and receiving an electric shock even in an insulated machine. In other words. An accident involving mechanical failure of the structure being worked on eg pole failure or live conductors falling to the ground.3.2 Hazards associated with EWP usage Elevating work platforms are used throughout the electrical industry.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N 94 2. the risk of coming into contact with exposed live electrical parts is relatively higher than for other forms of plant. and ✱ Creating an unsafe electrical environment at ground level eg if the body of the vehicle is live. This may be exacerbated by the close proximity to the exposed live part. Their configurations and applications vary widely.3 Working with an insulated EWP If an insulated elevating work platform is used for electrical work. ✱ Mechanical failure or loss of stability possibly resulting in contact with exposed live parts. ✱ Step and touch potentials between vehicle and ground. but there are common hazards and risks. Refer to Figure 3 .

assessment and authorisation of EWP operators who are to work in an electrical context should be equivalent to. by an earth potential being introduced via a test lead. Appropriate work practices should prevent different electrical potentials from existing in a basket. The training. Situations like this can occur if people work on parts with different potentials.4 Need for planning before electrical work using an EWP Operations of EWPs with a boom length of more than 11m are deemed a Prescribed Occupation under the Workplace Health and Safety Act 1995. 2. the Workplace Health and Safety requirements. 95 . as well as the mechanical effects of the conductors whipping about. should the device be applied to live parts.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N Light tower Electrical worker electrocuted when touching a live potential and an earthed metal pole Insulated elevating work platform Figure 3 – Example of an electrocution in an insulated EWP Another example involves the application of earths and short circuits. flexible extension lead or part of a structure. you should address the likely effects of introducing potentials in or near the basket. such as portable earthing devices.3. In the case of portable earthing devices. or better than. as amended. Workplace Health and Safety provisions require certain minimum levels of training and assessment before the operator can gain the necessary certificate to engage in the occupation. or through a portable earthing device.

stowage and maintenance for each machine should be clearly documented. Though many of these requirements are similar to general EWP requirements. The only exception is when a documented safe system of work is in place to provide a safe alternative. stowage and maintenance requirements of the prime mover – as well as the EWP portion of the plant – are complied with. this procedure must be followed to control the risks associated with this action. . certain safety issues should be addressed. from an EWP basket in a raised position. These issues vary depending on the job. such as chain saws or augers. The checks.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N 96 Before electrical workers perform any electrical work from an elevating work platform. weather and so on. inspections. the following list may be of assistance to deter mine suitability to perform work: ✱ Does the worker hold the appropriate electrical qualification? ✱ Is the electrical worker familiar with the procedure and method associated with the electrical work using the EWP? ✱ Is the electrical worker sufficiently familiar with tools and equipment. set-up. Though not exhaustive. or both. People should remain in the basket with their harness attached at all times when the basket is moved from the cradle. in electrical situations there are often additional requirements such as cleaning the insulating parts. location. If the safe system permits access or egress. inspections. set-up. to use them safely while exposed to the additional risks associated with an EWP near exposed live parts? ✱ Will there be a suitably qualified EWP operator operating the machine? ✱ Is the EWP operator familiar with the particular machine? ✱ Where special testing of the EWP and equipment is required eg strength and insulation – are all the tests up to date? ✱ Are appropriate persons on site able to safely perform a rescue in case an accident occurs? The EWP operator should ensure that all checks. These risks include falls from heights and electric shock.

the safe system should consider at least the following: ✱ Contingency plans that instruct operators on how to deal with situations that include : ✱ Mechanical failure or electrical or mechanical accidents. In addition. Additionally. power take-offs and hydraulic accumulators should be detailed. ✱ Fire in the hydraulic system. activating the ‘deadman’ as well as one of the controls. Battery operated systems. Communication needs should be defined. possibly at basket level. including an incident in which the operator slumps over the controls. the correct operation of multiple park brakes. Additionally. inspections. The operator should be able to use the controls easily while wearing the personal protective equipment required. 97 . ✱ The roles of all persons on site with electrical safety responsibilities should be clearly documented eg the role of the basket operator and the interrelationship with ground operators and any safety observers. Using the following may provide solutions: • • • • • Ground controls. Bleed valves. authorisation and auditing components. Control descent devices. design of the operator interlock device (deadman) should ensure it cannot be easily bypassed by the operator in the basket. set-up. ✱ A safe system of work should detail the requirements for checks. and Escape doors and hatches. stowage and maintenance. as should any actions required if direct contact is made with exposed live parts. assessment. ✱ A safe system of work should also include suitable controls for safely operating the EWP. Such components are general to machines as well as specific.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N A safe system of work associated with electrical work from an EWP will invariably include training. The operational check should include safety components such as deadman switches and control descent devices. By-pass valves at ground level may cater for such situations. or all three.

✱ If the safe system of work includes live work. . conductors and equipment attachments has not or will not be compromised eg considering whether the structure is safe for work without further control measures. • If conductors are per mitted to come into contact with the boom or basket of the EWP. restrictions and requirements in work practices to be used if booms and baskets are to work between. appropriate technical consideration is required. a safe system of work should clearly state the electrical and mechanical requirements for this practice. This list should include electrical and mechanical specifications including fail-safe systems. Making sure that step and touch potentials on and around the structure do not cause hazards eg from faults or leakage. the following points should be addressed: • • • Ensuring that safe approach distances are maintained. you should determine whether to adopt or reject the practice of earthing the machine frame. since each method has significant advantages and disadvantages. near and over energised and deenergised aerial works and installations. control measures should not create dangerous step and touch potentials. and • Detailing the authorisations. ✱ Where the EWP work is to be per for med on distribution and/or transmission assets. At a strategic level. private or otherwise. licences. Before work starts – ensuring that the mechanical integrity of the structure. A thorough analysis should include: • • • • The piece of plant being used. and The effect of electrical safety on workers and public. Regardless of the method chosen. Configuration of the electrical network. The tasks being performed.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N 98 ✱ The procedure for testing the machine electrically and mechanically should comply with relevant standards.

✱ Limiting switches have been installed to war n the operator or prevent any part of the EWP or load from entering the no-go exclusion zone. The safety observer danger poles and on towers are illustrated in Figure 4 – Safety observer zone for over head power lines on pole and towers. a elevating work platform is not operating in a safety observer danger zone when: ✱ The powerlines have been de-energised.3. ✱ Any hand tools or other equipment held by any person involved with the operation and not designed or capable of working safely within the area.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N 2. 99 . or ✱ Any parts of the EWP being moved are being prevented from entering the exclusion no-go zone by physical EXCLUSION ZONE barriers. Note: By virtue of the above definition. Encroachment into the exclusion zone is still strictly forbidden. ✱ The load being moved. or ✱ The person working on an elevating work platform is capable of entering the exclusion no-go zone of exposed live electrical power lines. Live power lines on poles and towers Load being moved M ra ax diu im s o um f th sle eE w W P zones for power lines on Crane or plant working near live power lines Figure 4 – Safety observer zone for overhead power lines on poles or towers The EWP is operating in the "safety observer zone" when any part of the EWP or person working in the bucket COULD enter the exclusion zone.5 Special provisions for working in the danger safety observer zone What is the safety observer danger zone? An elevating work platform is considered to be operating in the danger safety observer zone when there is a possibility that during operation: ✱ Any part of the EWP not designed and capable of working safely within the area.

.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N 100 Boom configuration Boom configuration should also be addressed. ‘knuckle’ and scissor booms. Elevating work platforms used in the electricity industry include telescopic. fly jibs and hybrid versions. An example of a possible hazard can be seen in Figure 5 – Example of a hazard due to the position of the vehicle and boom configuration (Worker performing de-energised work in an uninsulated EWP) Figure 5 – Example of a hazard due to the position of the vehicle and boom configuration (Worker per for ming de-energised work in an uninsulated EWP) Safety observer A safety observer is required when an elevating work platfor m is operated within the safety observer danger zone as defined in section B. The appropriate boom configuration can assist or hinder electrical safety and needs to be addressed in risk management. The employer of the EWP operator or a self-employed operator is responsible for appointing a safety observer to observe the approach of the EWP or load to power lines.3.5.2.

✱ An operator. may operate the EWP under the following conditions: • • • The controls are effectively insulated22. electrically connected to all metalwork associated with the controls. and When any indirect contact is required by these persons with the EWP. Examples: Adding additional light fitting to a light tower. or applying or removing tension from aerial conductors or catenary systems. you should allow for the fact that the mechanical loading of the structure can be significantly altered. The operator wears insulating gloves where the voltage of any of the overhead power lines does not exceed 1000 volts. while standing on the ground or while in an earthed situation. Where direct contact is necessary – effectively maintained insulating gloves must be worn. The employer or self-employed person operating the crane is responsible for ensuring the effectiveness of the insulation in accordance with the relevant Standard.6 Additional loading affecting movement or position of the EWP basket When considering the risks associated with working on or near structures. pole or tail rope used to control load movement. 101 . any part of the EWP or its load: ✱ The operator while not in contact with an electrical earth or another source of potential. 2. or allowed to touch. 22 Insulation must at least be effective against the maximum voltage of the par ticular overhead power line. such contact must be via a non-conductive object eg hauling line.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N People in contact with the EWP When the elevating work platfor m operates in the safety observer danger zone. only the following persons may be instructed to touch. ✱ Other personnel may be allowed in the safety observer danger zone on condition that: • • • • Their presence is essential to the particular operation of the crane or plant eg other workers helping to set up the EWP. or The operator stands on an equipotential metallic mat or tray/deck. These persons are not required to have direct contact with any part of the EWP.3.

Low voltage circuits.4 Working on or from poles and towers Sources of hazards when working on or from a pole or tower include: ✱ Electric shocks from multiple sources of potential. including aerial earths. For example. In these circumstances. the falling pole may strike the EWP. . inappropriate conductor tensioning techniques or raising and lowering with a power winch could apply inappropriate force to an EWP. These may be caused by a number of factors ranging from failing insulators to incorrect connections (including incorrect polarity). creating hazards for work crew. ✱ Step and touch potentials at ground level and above. ✱ Clashing of conductors and conductors contacting other circuits. adequate contingencies should be employed.3. At the same time. 2. often uninsulated and uncovered. This state occurs when an operator knows that a conductor exists but either cannot see it or loses sight of it.7 Possible illusions as a result of using an EWP Operators should be aware of a feeling of light-headedness as clouds move in the background or affect the operator’s peripheral vision. Earthed metalwork and lighting arrestors. operators should be aware of an illusion known as ‘wire blindness’. Multiple and common earth systems. The elevating work platform should not be subjected to mechanical forces for which it is not designed. pilot wires and broadband communication cable (BBCC – cable TV). rescuers and the public. In addition. however.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N 102 A mechanical failure of this kind can compound hazards and dramatically increase the risk and consequences. and Earthed catenary systems such as high voltage aerial bundled conductor. 2. For example. Streetlight mains that test as both an active and a neutral depending on the status of the control contractor. where work is performed near aerial conductors. live mains may fall to the ground. These sources include: • • • • • • High voltage circuits. if the tip loading of a pole is altered and a pole consequently fails.

a person may suffer ‘suspension trauma’ if left hanging in the harness. an engineering assessment should be conducted if the tip loading is to be altered per manently or where work procedures cannot ensure structural stability. As part of the examination and evaluation. Where the tip loading is being altered. a below ground inspection may be necessary. Structures and insulators supporting live high voltage conductors should be checked to identify conditions that may result in leakage through the pole. and ✱ Whether the work is to be performed from the pole or from another device such as an elevating work platform. creating rapid movements that can cause workers to touch energised parts. Further. ✱ Injury and illness from ‘suspension trauma’. and ✱ Effects that may be beyond the immediate control of the work group including: • • • Lightning. further tests should be done to determine whether the structure is safe to climb. Where leakage is suspected. steel or concrete. Electrical work and associated work on or from a pole should be performed in line with an effectively implemented safe system of work. The requirement for an examination should apply regardless of: ✱ The type of structure ie wood. cross-ar ms or poles. If restrained after a fall. Work should not begin until the pole has been examined and evaluated as safe to climb or work on. If loading of a pole is altered consideration should be given to the effect this may have on adjacent poles. ✱ Whether a pole is owned by a supply entity or not.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N ✱ Failure of conductors. This has hazards associated not only with the high voltage but with high voltage causing induction in the low voltage. Wind gusts causing movement as well as static effects. and Vehicles hitting poles. ✱ Working near exposed live parts eg working on de-energised low voltage while the high voltage above is energised. 103 . work procedures should include methods that will prevent structural failure.

✱ Requirements for altering loadings on structures are communicated.4. . The following precautions should be taken when poles and towers are worked on: ✱ When conductors are released or tensioned – tension should be altered in a way that controls their effect on structural stability.1 Work practices A safe system of work that is effective in ensuring electrical safety should ensure at least the following: ✱ Clear instructions are given about working live and de-energised. and ✱ The stability of the structure is assessed as adequate.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N 104 2. ✱ Isolation and access are introduced to create an electrically safe environment.

bolt holes. For other poles. bolts and the pole head should be examined for deterioration or weakness before heavier or more heavily tensioned conductors are added. arm checks. leading to structural failure. Structural integrity can be checked by using an appropriate method such as a rope test. and ✱ Work practices should also ensure that objects are not dropped or allowed to fall from heights. Where a rope test cannot be safely or practically completed. workers should consult the asset owner or operator. ✱ Additional or heavier mains should be tensioned so that an overall balance in tension is closely maintained on the cross arm and pole. conductors should not be cut and allowed to fall.4. a suitable procedure for identifying pole defects should be used. This practice may cause dangerous whip.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N ✱ In particular. 2. ✱ Cross arms.2 Wooden poles For wooden poles owned by an electricity entity. 105 . Fungus and loose sapwood should not obscure these markings. the examination should include a check for markings such as “suspect” (one diagonal painted stripe) or “unserviceable” (painted cross).

and ✱ ‘Sounding’ the pole by using a hammer or maul to detect unsound structures. . Take appropriate control measures such as using barriers and insulated mats. In this case. and ✱ A below ground inspection. Steel poles have various shapes and sizes. 2. especially when wet. This should include the following tests: ✱ A rope test. 2. Inspection and testing should include any signs of corrosion-induced structural damage. During these tests. clamped or bonded to a concrete pole should be treated as conductive. appropriate action should be taken to ensure coworkers and others are safe from falling objects etc. Safe work practices when using a ladder and pole platforms need to ensure that the devices can be fitted soundly.4. During these tests.4. it should be tested to ensure that the pole is safe to climb or access.4 Steel poles With steel poles. A ‘ladder test’ – or any other method of testing a pole by imposing pressure via a ladder – should not be used as an appropriate way of determining if a pole is sound.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N 106 If a pole is not marked as suspect or unserviceable. internal and external corrosion can create the risk of structural failure. appropriate action should be taken to ensure coworkers and others are safe from falling objects etc. Therefore. The conductivity occurs both through metal fittings connected to the reinforcement and through the concrete sur face. ✱ A below ground inspection. Safe work practices should include preventing people from falling from heights. the following tests should be considered: ✱ A rope test.3 Concrete poles Concrete poles are conductive. the sur face of a concrete pole and all metal work bolted.

Pole buoys or pikes may provide a satisfactory temporary means of supporting badly deteriorated poles. If pole stability depends on the conductors being released. using at least three stays attached as high as possible. additional stays should be installed to maintain or increase stability. the old pole will not fall. and ✱ When the replacement pole is close enough – per for m work associated with the old pole by working from the new pole. The head of the pole should also be secured. When a pole has to be climbed. so that when conductors are released.5 Working on unserviceable or suspect poles In some cases. When this happens. or both. Otherwise. hold the conductors under control and release them slowly so that you can note their effect on the pole before you release them completely. If the pole cannot be held or supported so that all the conductors can be safely removed. worked on. an appropriately experienced and qualified person should evaluate the pole’s condition to decide whether the pole can be safely climbed. ✱ Hold the pole at head and ground level with a pole lifter or crane of suitable size. When releasing conductors from an unserviceable pole. pole buoys require additional staying if used for support. additional strengthening and support may not be installed before work is done on a “unserviceable” or “suspect” pole. 107 . ✱ Attach suitable stay equipment that will hold the pole upright under all conductor tensions and subsequent twisting. The pole should be made as secure as possible with available equipment. no attempt should be made to climb or work on the pole until it is safe to per form the work. pole buoys are not suitable for the task. Additional measures to ensure safety may include: ✱ Secure the pole’s base by driving at least three long gads into the ground around the pole and then lashing them to it.4. The old pole should be lashed to the new one and stayed.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N 2.

Figure 6 – Rope pull test . damaged or polluted insulators. a detection/ inspection should be carried out.6 Electrical leakage procedures for poles Before climbing any pole supporting live high voltage conductors. tie wire or debris touching the pole or cross arm. you should ensure the pole is tested or inspected for damage or both. Where leakage is suspected on poles supporting broadband communication cables (BBCC).A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N 108 2. If you see evidence of pole top fires or other fire damage.4. Where leakage is suspected. They should also look at whether any leakage through a BBCC supporting conductor might affect the detection’s validity. When conductor attachments cannot be clearly assessed from the ground because of wet weather or poor visibility. appropriate procedures should be used to detect leakage. or a conductor. make a visual inspection for any evidence of leakage. work should not be carried out until the pole has been confirmed safe to work on or from. These procedures should address the hazards associated with testing near exposed high and low voltage conductors.

4. and ✱ Plant and equipment that is unsafe. Refer to Figure 6 – Rope pull test. parts or devices are not to be used. there is any doubt about the pole’s soundness. The rope pullers should be located on the opposite side of the pole from the ladder. Examples of where tagging out of service should occur include: ✱ Tools and equipment that are faulty. Apply pressure as close as possible to the head of the pole on the side or in the direction least supported by stays or conductors. the item or items should be made safe (eg isolated) and tagged out of service.5 Tagging out of service When equipment. 109 . and ✱ If. pressure must be applied progressively or gradually. under repair or being maintained. • Two people should pull on the rope or ropes while standing as far as practical from the base of the pole. ✱ The rope must be long enough to ensure operators are safe if a pole should fail.7 Rope testing The following items should be addressed when performing a rope test on a pole: ✱ Ensure members of the public and workers are safe. 2. during a procedure to determine whether the pole is stable. Provide pole support before proceeding further. ✱ Signs of failure include excessive movement.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N 2. the pole must be regarded as “suspect”. and • During the test. signs and sounds of splitting. defective or out of test date. ✱ The following process should be considered: • • Extend a ladder with rope attached to the top stile or head of the ladder as far up the pole as practical. ✱ Other people should be kept out of the area during the test . Avoid aggressive or jerky actions.

such as backhoes. can excavate near: 23 Dial Before You Dig contacts member asset owners who have services at or near the proposed excavation site and will arrange for information about these services to be sent. excavators. It can be difficult to tell the difference between high voltage and low voltage cables.2. Tags used should comply with an appropriate standard.6 Excavation near energised cables Workers involved in excavation should be aware of the possibility of electric shock and explosions associated with damaged underground cables. 2. metal-sheathed cables can cause injuries if damaged. Dial Before You Dig does not go on-site and find the physical location of the underground service. There is a potential for injury and death if low voltage and high voltage cables are damaged.6. contact Dial Before You Dig by any of the following methods: ✱ Telephone – 1100. For further infor mation.au. Refer to also section 5. Asset owners will usually respond within two working days and may provide copies of underground ser vice plans. you should contact the organization.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N 110 Tagging out of service is a control measure that physically excludes items from use and should form part of a safe system of work.2 Using mechanical excavation equipment A safe system of work should deter mine beforehand how close machinery. because protective systems may not always operate fast enough to prevent injury. Even earthed.6. ✱ Fax – 1300 652 077. 2. It must be emphasised that Dial Before You Dig is a referral and information service only and is not the legal owner of site information. .2.com. horizontal borers and chain diggers. or ✱ Via the internet at www.1 Precautions before excavation Before excavation.dialbeforeyoudig. 2.4. a free enquiry referral service for infor mation on underground assets anywhere in Australia. “Dial Before You Dig” 23 .

at least until enough of an opening has been made in the conduit to permit the installation of mechanical protection. When using powered tools to excavate beside or around direct-laid cables in rock or hard fill. Typically.6. a number of additional hazards should be managed. slabs or strips. Earth systems or grids.7 Vegetation management. If the cables cannot be removed. Pneumatic or other powered excavation tools. and Cable protection (mechanical) such as cover tiles. the work should be done by hand excavation or with hand tools. If it is necessary to excavate near the items above. 2. chainsaws and electrical workers If an electrical worker is required to perform vegetation management near exposed live parts. It is preferable to remove cables from the conduit while the work is done. pits or equipment. Conduits or ducts. such as jackhammers. they should be de-energised. Hand excavation should be used. Explosions and electric shock can result. this work ranges from clearing vines that have grown into a switchboard to trimming trees to maintain clearances from overhead powerlines. existing cables should be protected in case the machine slips. Underground pillars. 2. 111 . should not be used near conduits that contain live cables.3 Excavating concrete-encased conduits Excavating concrete-encased conduits containing live cables can be hazardous if appropriate precautions are not taken. The plant operator should be guided by another worker positioned to warn the operator if the machine appears likely to venture too close or to cause damage.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ ✱ Cables or cable joints.

An incident of this kind can create electrical or mechanical hazards or both. resulting in burns. ✱ Stripping cable can cause injuries ranging from electric shock to burns and cuts. by causing a live conductor to fall to the ground. An example: tree trimming from ground level where the tree or part of the tree may touch exposed live parts. 2. The conductors may or may not be bare. A worker may receive a electric shock via the vegetation or cause a fault or both. and ✱ The likelihood of a current path through the vegetation should also be addressed. regardless of whether by cable cutters or a hacksaw. electrical hazards include: ✱ A situation where objects fall against energised conductors. Example: when removing an unserviceable wooden pole located between energised mains. ✱ A situation where objects fall across or onto conductors. causing step and touch potentials at ground level or mains to clash or both.8 Use of tools Poor use of tools can expose workers to electrical hazards including: ✱ Electric shock and explosion if an energised cable is cut.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N 112 In addition to hazards associated with general vegetation management and chainsaw use. for example. . objects should not be allowed to fall across conductors. Current may track to earth or between phases via the vegetation. and ✱ T ightening connections can cause short circuits and explosions eg a spanner can slip and bridge two phases.

and should complement. records and evidence that the actions have been addressed. Environmental Systems. instruments and equipment.A P P E N D I X B – F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N These tools should be used according to manufacturer’s instructions and an effective. instruments and safety equipment used for electrical work. include: ✱ The safe system of work should be drawn up with people who are representative of electrical workers. there should be planning and pre-prepared actions. Safe electrical work practices. and Quality Systems. Common elements of a safe system of work that should apply to all electrical work. and Testing and faultfinding. Tools. Tools should be restrained at the work position to prevent them from falling into live switchboards or jamming controls eg in an EWP. people should be able to demonstrate that they have identified and addressed risks associated with workers’ safety. Refer also to section 6. ✱ The system should be consistent with.1.3. Refer to section 6. ✱ A safe system of work should include practical guidance on at least the following: • • • • • Electrical access. Physical access. both live and de-energised.1 for requirements for a safe system to per form live work. other management systems such as general Workplace Health and Safety. 113 . tool holders and tool restraints including tool pouches and baskets. for a safe system of work to exist.4 for further information on tools. 3 General elements of a safe system of work Generally.3.3 and 6. The use of lanyards around wrists. should be addressed. Typically. safe system of work. refer to sections 5.

11.Queensland Government Department of Industrial Relations v2.02 .