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Electric Shock in the Workplace

Jim's Test & Tag

The effects of an electric shock can range from mild discomfort to death. You need to make sure preventative measures have been taken in your business. Awareness, combined with compliance to the correct testing and tagging procedures, will help you protect your staff from harm. 

At Jim’s Test & Tag we provide testing services that protect your business and employees. We work to ensure all our clients have optimised the safety of their workplace by being aware of the risks, and knowing their obligations.

What happens when you get an electric shock?

A voltage level as low as 50 volts can cause an electric shock to occur. When a current passes through the body, it can block the electrical signals between the brain and the muscles. This can cause the following physical ramifications:

  • The heart can lose its rhythm, or stop beating entirely
  • Trouble with or inability to breath
  • Muscle spasms

The effects can vary based on the nature of the electrical fault and which part of the body is involved in the shock. Follow this link for more information about the symptoms of electrical shock, and how to help someone in a crisis.

How can I prevent an electric shock?

At Jim’s Test & Tag we provide a range of electric shock prevention services. Our experienced technicians can accurately assess the electrical risk in your workplace and provide tests accordingly. Our testing services strictly adhere to the current Australian safety standards, and are the most effective resources in preventing unnecessary tragedy.

1. RCD Safety Switch Testing

The primary purpose of a Residual Current Device (or Safety Switch) is preventing electric shock. This life saving device detects changes in electrical currents, and switches off the power when an abnormality is identified. Your workplace may have an RCD on a switchboard or power point, or you may have a portable RCD to use with portable appliances.

2. Earth Safety Check

This test involves assessing the loop impedance of the current in your building. The earthing needs to have a low resistance and be connected to ensure a path is provided for stray current – avoiding the body as a potential pathway. Our team can test the electrical installations and power points at your workplace to ensure the correct amount of energy is passing through.

3. Portable Appliance Testing

Workplace related accidents cause a number of electrical deaths each year. Having your portable tools and other equipment tested will minimise the risk of on-site electric shock.

4. Electrical Testing & Tagging

At Jim’s Test & Tag we specialise in electrical testing & tagging. We work to eliminate hostile operating environments where employees are exposed to electrical equipment that is damaged, or not in correct use. Electrical equipment in your workplace that has not received regular testing & tagging can be a potential source of electric shock.

Electrical Negligence: What are the consequences?

Your business is eligible for prosecution if a category 1 or 2 offence has occurred. A category 1 offence occurs when a duty holder “recklessly endangers a person’s safety, risking serious injury or death”. The maximum penalty in Australia for a company is up to $3 million, and up to five years in jail for responsible individuals.

A category 2 offence occurs when a person fails to comply with the current Australian safety standards and laws, and this negligence exposes an individual to a risk of death or serious injury. For a category 2 offence, your business could lose $1.5 million. Your business can also incur on the spot fines for other electrical safety offences including:

  • Performing unlicensed electrical work
  • Failure to comply with testing & tagging obligations
  • Failure to comply with an improvement notice

At Jim’s Test & Tag, we are aware of your obligations, and fully compliant with Australian safety regulation standards. Safety is our number one priority – we want to help you protect your employees and avoid unnecessary prosecution. You can maintain the safety of your employees and your business by following state workplace legislation.

Click the following links for detailed information about state legislation:



Concerned about electrical shock in the workplace? Contact Jim’s Test & Tag today on 131 546 for a free quote.

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