27 September 2023

Home workers warned about power

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The Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety has issued guidance for the safe use of electrical and gas equipment aimed at people working from home during the Coronavirus pandemic.

The Department said residents should check that they had at least two residual current devices (RCD) installed on their main switchboard.

“They can prove they are working correctly by pressing the test button before they start working from home,” the Department said.

“If an RCD trips twice or more, for no apparent reason, have your wiring and appliances checked by a licensed electrical contractor.”

It said residents should ensure the power supply was switched off before carrying out a visual inspection of all electrical equipment in the home office.

“Check for cuts, nicks or exposed wires on any cords; check equipment for visible damage (broken covers, overheating discolouration) and either discard any damaged equipment or have it repaired by an appropriately licensed electrical worker,” the Department said.

“Ensure leads and power boards are placed where they will not get damaged by moving furniture, chairs, foot traffic or other activities, and do not place papers or other items against air vents of equipment or cover equipment such as power boards or power supplies.”

It said that with winter approaching there was a need to check gas heaters before they were turned on.

“Good ventilation and maintenance are vital to prevent poor combustion which may result in harmful levels of carbon monoxide,” it said.

“Ensure gas heaters have been serviced according to the manufacturer’s instructions or at least every two years.”

“Make sure the room is well ventilated and permanent ventilation openings are not blocked,” it said.

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