PEME conducted an assessment of a site’s Portable Appliance Testing (PAT) procedures and identified that there were unacceptable ‘gaps’ in the management and reporting of tested and overdue equipment. An improved process has been put in-place to ensure our clients items are safe and compliant.
PAT is the term used to describe the examination of electrical appliances and equipment to ensure they are safe to use. Most electrical safety defects can be found by visual examination but some types of defect can only be found by testing. However, it is essential to understand that visual examination is an essential part of the process because some types of electrical safety defect cannot be detected by testing alone.
PEME Operations Manager, Duncan Sayer, manages an on-site team that supports our client with an Asset Care package which includes Plant Maintenance and Project Installations. PAT Testing is just one of several responsibilities included within the asset care package. Duncan conducted an Assessment using the PEME Asset Care Model and this highlighted PAT shortfalls and identified remedial actions to drive continuous improvement. This was partly due to the use of outdated hardware and the lack of a clear procedure. He then organised the purchase of an up-to-date tester and set about completely re-thinking how the site PAT testing procedure / Schedule should be managed.
Duncan realised that an inappropriate and poorly maintained equipment (item) list was being used and so in the first instance generated a completely new and accurate list. He started with the use of 10 site zones already laid out within the CMMS system and systematically had every item within each zone tested one zone per period. Aiden Cassidy, PEME’s on site PAT Tester, freshly identified every item within each zone entering the item’s details into the new tester and assigned a unique ID number that included a reference to the zone that the item was located in. Duncan is shown with Aiden as he conducts his testing.
Duncan said “One year on from the implementation of our new procedure, we now have an accurate equipment list with some 3000 plus items and although we face continual challenges around items moving from one area to another or items being removed from site altogether, we are currently running at 96% compliant. We now rarely see a near miss raised for equipment that is overdue a PAT test.”