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Periodic Inspection Reports (PIR)

Purpose of periodic inspection,

The main purpose of periodic inspection and testing is to detect so far as is reasonably practicable, and to report on, any factors impairing or likely to impair the safety of an electrical installation.
The aspects to be covered include all of the

  • Safety of persons against the effects of electric shock and burns.
  • Protection against damage to property by fire and heat arising from an installation defect.
  • Confirmation that the installation is not damaged or deteriorated so as to impair safety.
  • Identification of non-compliances with the current editions of AS/NZS 3000 and applicable standards, or installation defects, which may give rise to danger.

Periodic inspection and testing procedures

The procedures for periodic inspection and testing differ in some respects from those for the initial verification of new installation work. This is because the subject of an electrical installation condition report is usually an installation which has been energised and in use for some time. Particular attention therefore needs to be given during the inspection process to assessing the condition of the installation in respect of:

  • Safety
  • Wear and tear
  • Corrosion
  • Damage and deterioration
  • Excessive loading
  • Age
  • External influences
  • Suitability (taking account of any changes in use or building extensions etc).

Also, for reasons beyond the inspector’s control, the inspector may be unable to gain access to parts of the existing installation. For example, it is usually impracticable to inspect cables that have been concealed within the fabric of the building. Such restrictions are likely to result in the inspection
and testing of those parts of the installation being limited, or being omitted entirely from the process. Where, during the course of inspection or testing, a real and immediate danger is found to be present in an installation (from an accessible exposed live part, for example), immediate action will be necessary to make it safe before continuing. However, the discovery of the dangerous condition should still be recorded in the report and classified accordingly.
Before leaving site and with the agreement of the user or owner, any dangerous conditions found in an installation. For example, where there are accessible live parts due to blanks missing from a consumer unit, suitable temporary barriers should be provided to protect persons from
direct contact with those live parts. As persons using the installation are at risk, it is not sufficient simply to draw attention to the danger when submitting the electrical installation condition
report. At the very least, the inspector must ensure that the client is made aware, at the time of discovery, of the danger that exists. An agreement should be made with the client as to the appropriate action to be taken to remove the source of danger (for example, by switching off and isolating the affected part of the installation until remedied), before continuing with the inspection or testing.