Today, peak Australian electrical industry body, the National Electrical and Communications Association (NECA), called on landlords in Western Australia to ensure they had residual current devices installed to help prevent electrical incidents in the home.
General Manager of NECA Western Australia, Mr Kyle Kutasi, said the installation of residual current devices, or safety switches as they are commonly known, is a sensible decision to improve the safety of rental properties and the installations are now required by law.
“There is no doubt safety switches can help to prevent dangerous electric shocks in the home so it is sensible to have these devices installed,” Mr Kutasi said.
“The law was changed in 2009 to make the installation mandatory in all rental properties and the two-year transition period has now expired. This means landlords could face prosecution if they have failed to have safety switches installed on both the power and lighting circuits.”
“NECA is calling on all landlords, tenants and managing agents to ensure the safety devices have been installed.”
Electrical inspectors will monitor compliance with the regulations and respond to any complaints. Penalties of up to $15,000 for individuals and $100,000 for bodies corporate may apply if residual current devices are not fitted.
A simple electrical inspection by an electrician can determine if a property has residual current devices fitted. If there is no device fitted, landlords or managing agents can contact a licensed electrical contractor to have the devices fitted.
“The requirement to have safety switches in all new homes and homes that have had significant renovations has been in the Australian Wiring Rules and therefore mandatory for many years.”
“It is now time for landlords and agents ensure that tenants have the same level of protection.”
NECA has a ‘Find an Electrician’ service on its website – www.neca.asn.au