Why complete the Testing and Tagging of Electrical equipment?

Electricity has the potential to cause serious injury or death from damaged or faulty electrical equipment. If you are a business, employer or any other person conducting a business, you must make sure that electrical equipment is regularly inspected and tested by a competent person.  Fines are applicable and insurance companies may reject claims if poor electrical maintenance is identified as a cause.

What is Testing and Tagging?

The Testing and Tagging of electrical equipment, is a process to ensure that equipment that is plugged in a power point is in good and safe working condition. Over time, electrical equipment can deteriorate and become hazardous. Regular testing and tagging helps to identify potential issues and prevent accidents before they happen. Just because something works doesn’t mean it is not potentially dangerous. The process also ensures that equipment is compliant with relevant standards. By completing the test and tag compliance annually you can have peace of mind knowing your equipment is safe, reliable, and up to date.

What is a Residual Current Device (RCD)?

RCDs are electrical safety devices designed to immediately switch off the supply of electricity when electricity leaking to earth is detected at harmful levels.  They offer high levels of personal protection from electric shock. 

Importantly, the testing of RCDs both fixed and portable is not covered by Test and Tag processes.  Test and tagging only ensures appliances both new and existing are physically tagged with a date.

Competent person

Only a competent person can carry out the inspection and testing of electrical equipment. A competent person is someone who has acquired through training, qualification or experience the knowledge and skills to carry out the task. This could be a person who has successfully completed a nationally accredited training course, run by a registered training organisation, on the use of a Portable Appliance, or a licensed electrical worker who is deemed to be competent for the purpose of electrical inspection and testing.  RCD testing, especially of fixed devices in your Power Board (fuse box) need to be regularly tested by a qualified electrician.

Inspection and Testing frequency

Most workplaces require a risk management approach to determine the type of inspection and if necessary, any testing required. The class of work and the risks associated with the use of specified electrical equipment will determine how often equipment is tested. A person with management or control of a workplace, this includes Churches, Halls and Rectory, must take all reasonable steps to ensure that electrical equipment and residual current devices (RCDs) used at the workplace are tested regularly by a competent person to ensure that the devices are operating effectively.  Testing should occur at minimum

  • Portable electrical equipment and devices - 1 year

            (eg. heaters, laptops, power boards, fans that have a high use and may be plugged in and out a lot)

  • Non-portable electrical equipment and devices - 2 years

            (eg. microwaves, mounted TV's & projectors, fixed heating/cooling equipment)

  • RCDs - every 2 years


Any questions, please contact the Diocesan Property Officer, David Flight on 0451 574 847