NEWS

Safer outcomes for gas and electrical work

Thursday 27 September 2012, 12:16PM
By Phil Heatley
131 views


Changes to gas and electrical certification regimes mean safer outcomes for consumers, Energy and Resources Minister Phil Heatley and Building and Construction Minister Maurice Williamson said today.

The changes mean all gas and electrical installation work will now require certification.

The amended regulations will be published in the New Zealand Gazette today and are the result of a review of the regimes to ensure they provide cost-effective public safety outcomes.

The certification regimes have also been updated to permit practitioners to design their own certificates, and store and send them electronically. This means that gas and electrical practitioners will no longer be required to buy Certificates of Compliance from their worker registration board, removing a compliance cost.

Mr Heatley said that improving the certification regimes will raise standards in the gas and electricity industries while doing away with unnecessary compliance costs.

“The changes provide for an improved certification process with a new risk-based system that emphasises safety and accountability for installation work,” he said.

“Details of all work classified as high-risk will have to be registered on a new publicly available database run by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.

“This will improve the monitoring of ‘high-risk’ work and focus attention on the areas that will provide the greatest improvement in safety outcomes.”

Mr Williamson said that the changes will benefit consumers.

“The changes mean consumers will always be entitled to get a certificate once work is completed. This will assure consumers that installation work and connection to energy supply is safe to use.

“Consumers should always check they are using a licensed practitioner before work begins and keep a copy of their certification once work is completed,’’ he said.

The amendment regulations also update the fees charged by the Electrical Workers Registration Board in relation to examination and licensing.

The changes are effective from 1 July 2013. For more information go to www.energysafety.govt.nz or phone 0508 377 463.