Electrical Safety

HS418 Electrical Testing and Tagging

HS437 RCD Guideline 

The Guidelines above provide the framework to manage hazards associated with the use of portable plug in electrical devices at UNSW. From the beginning of 2013 it is mandatory that all plug-in electrical devices are protected by some form of Residual Current Device (RCD). All new building works/refurbishments since the early 2000s have had RCDs installed at the distribution boards. However, there are many areas within BEES that have not undergone comprehensive refurbishment and therefore may not have RCD protection. If you are unsure whether the electrical circuits in your area have RCD protection contact the BEES Technical Services Manager.

Area managers/supervisors within BEES must adopt a systematic approach to either eliminate or control the risks associated with electrical hazards using the following controls:

  • Routine visual checks and regular workplace inspections;
  • Ensure electrical equipment has regular maintenance in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions, and if electrical equipment or facilities are found to be defective, tagged ‘out of service’;
  • Ensure all electrical equipment and facilities that are reported defective are either repaired or replaced;
  • Use RCD devices, and where warranted,
  • Ensure all electrical equipment used in hostile environments is tested in accordance with AS/NZS 3670:2010. 

Several members of the BEES Technical staff are trained to test the electrical safety of the School’s electrical equipment. In addition, the School engages contractors to annually conduct testing and tagging of electrical equipment used in hostile environments. Hostile environments include areas that expose electrical equipment to moisture, heat, vibration, mechanical damage, corrosive chemicals and dust. In BEES these areas are typically outdoor areas (e.g. electrical equipment used for fieldwork), laboratory/workshop and storage rooms, and kitchen areas. Requests for testing and tagging of electrical should be directed to the BEES Technical Services Manager

Area managers/supervisors must assess the risks and determine whether their electrical equipment requires electrical testing and tagging. They must also ensure all electrical equipment is properly maintained, serviced and records kept in their local area Inspection, Testing and Monitoring Schedule (ITMS). A copy of the local area ITMS must be submitted annually to the BEES HS Manager for review and incorporation in to the BEES ITM records.

The following provides a link to the ET & T record for the testing and tagging conduct by SPA Trade Services:

November 2014

November 2013

To ensure electrical safety in BEES, all workers and others must:

  • Take care when using electrical equipment
  • Refrain from using equipment or power outlets that are visibly damaged
  • Report any electrical hazard immediately to the area supervisor and ensure an out of service tag is affixed to the equipment or power outlet
  • Refrain from approaching a person receiving an electric shock until the power source has been isolated
  • If witnessing a person receiving an electric shock, immediately contact Security Services on 56666 (internal phone) or 9385 6666 (external phone).


New equipment brought onsite

Any new equipment brought into any of the BEES areas requires a 'new to service' tag.

  • “New to service” means it has been purchased recently and hasn’t been used before
  • If it has been used, but is being brought on campus, it needs to be tested and tagged. Contact the BEES Technical Services Manager.

The 'new to service' tags can be found in printer rooms throughout the building.

Instructions for completing the tag

  1. Write name – whoever is bringing the equipment in can stick on the tag
  2. Write date in service
  3. Write date test due (in 5 years for computer/monitor leads; in 1 year for everything else, including powerboards and extension leads in offices)
  4. Peel off the white bit
  5. Then stick down the clear laminate cover to protect the handwritten bits.
  6. Stick label on the power lead near the plug