All Electrical Work carried out on company premises is subject to a permit-to-work.
A permit to work is defined as a specialised safe system of work through which certain activities can only be carried out by an authorised person.
Permits to Work are an essential and important way of ensuring the health and safety of employees, contractors and others. They go towards ensuring a company fulfils their duty of care.
Electrical Work involves the use of electrical equipment. This is defined as anything used or intended to involve the use of electrical energy in the following ways:
Any equipment which uses electrical energy in any of these ways would be classed as electrical and therefore requiring Electrical Work.
There are many specific terms relevant to Electrical Work:
- Live: this means that the equipment is at voltage and is connected to a source of electricity
- Charged: this means the equipment has acquired a charge either through being live or through other means such as by static or induction charging
- Live work: this is work on or near conductors which are accessible and either live or charged
- Dead: this means there is no electrical charge or “live” status
- Disconnected: this is used to describe equipment which is not connected to an electrical energy source
- Isolated: this describes equipment or elements of an electrical system which are disconnected and separated by a safe distance (the isolating gap) for any sources of electrical energy. Isolated equipment is positioned in such a way that disconnection is fully secure and there is no risk of re-energisation.
- Low voltage: describes voltages which exceed 50v AC or 120v CD between conductors or earth, but do not exceed 1000v AC or 1500v DC between conductors or 600v AC or 900v DC between any conductor and earth.