Electrical Safety and PAT Testing
Over half of domestic fires in the UK are caused by electricity. For information on electrical safety, please see the Electrical Safety First Webpage.
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All electrical items that are over 12 months old must be safety tested prior to use in University Accommodation. The relevant safety test is termed a ‘PAT’ or ‘Portable Appliance Test’.
You are required to have your electrical items PAT tested before arrival so you know they are safe to use. Electrical goods without a valid PAT certificate, or a receipt confirming they are under a year old, may be removed from your residence, and kept for you to collect at the end of your Licence Agreement. If there is an electrical fire or damage to your residence due to the use of an electrical item that was over 12 months old and was has not PAT tested, you will be held responsible for any damage caused and may be prosecuted.
If you bring electrical items with you that you have not managed to get PAT tested before arrival you can make use of our PAT Testing Roadshow. These items cannot be used in your residence until they have been tested and certified at the Roadshow.
PAT Testing Roadshow Details
As a goodwill gesture to those who haven't been able to have their items PAT tested at home, the Residences team will be offering a limited PAT testing service from Circuit Compliance for free to ensure you are able to comply fully with your licence agreement.
If you are confused about which appliances need to be tested, it is everything that plugs into the wall, and that is over 12 months old. When you attend our PAT Testing Roadshow, remember to bring both the device and the charging lead.
The PAT Roadshow will be visiting various locations at or near all residences. If you cannot make a day or time please remember that you are welcome to take your items to any location on any day regardless of where you are living.
Dates and times to be confirmed once term begins.
What needs testing?
All electrical items over 12 months old will need testing as detailed in the Residents' Handbook 2019-2020 that forms part of the Accommodation Licence Agreement. This includes any item that are plugged into a wall socket (eg. phone chargers / adapters / TV / hair dryer). Even items with a detachable charger will need testing (eg. Laptop / TV / Printer).
What if my items are too heavy to carry?
If you have an electrical item which needs PAT testing and you can’t carry it (eg. TV / printer) then it may be worth asking any friends / flatmates for assistance. Alternatively, you may find another external PAT testing company who may be able to help.
Please note that the University is not obliged to help carry belongings to the PAT Testing Roadshow for you.
What if it’s less than 12 months old?
If your item is less than 12 months old, it will not need to be PAT tested as it will already have been checked during the manufacturing process to ensure it complies with safety regulations. However, you will need proof that the item is less than 12 months old, such as a purchase receipt for example.
You do not need to bring any item less than 12 months old to the Roadshow, and you do not need to submit any receipt/proof. Just keep the receipt / proof safe in case any of your items need checked by us at any time.
I got my item PAT tested last year, do I need to get it done again?
A PAT test only lasts for a year therefore, if you got your electrical items tested last year, you will still need to get them PAT tested again.
Is there a deadline to get them tested by?
You need to have items PAT tested before arrival so you know they are safe to use. Our PAT testing roadshow is available to test any items you did not manage to test before your arrival. Therefore, any items not PAT tested cannot be used until they are tested and certified as approved at the Roadshow.
If any electrical items which haven’t been PAT tested are found in University residences after the PAT testing roadshow has finished, they will be removed until the end of your Licence Agreement.
What if I don’t get items PAT tested?
Any electrical items which haven’t been PAT tested or you don’t have proof that they are under 12 months old, may be removed from your residences and kept for you to collect at the end of your Licence Agreement.
If there is an electrical fire or damage to your residence due to the use of an electrical item which has not been PAT tested / deemed safe to use, you will be responsible for any charges and may be prosecuted.
Why do items need testing?
Electrical items need PAT testing in order to ensure they are safe to use and do not pose a fire safety risk when in use.
What happens if my items fail the PAT test?
If your item fails a PAT test, you have a number of options. You can simply take your item back home, or just keep it in your room, unused, for part of all of your Licence period. Alternatively, you can make your own arrangements to have your item fixed. If you have your item fixed during the period of our PAT Testing Roadshow (Monday 30 September to Friday 11 October) you are welcome to bring it back to us at one of our Roadshow locations and times to have it re-tested. If you take your item to an electrician, it may be possible for the electrician to mend and PAT test the item and provide you with PAT Test certification. Unfortunately, the University is not able to provide an electrician service to mend your failed items.