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Topic Title: Why is installing a new circuit a higher risk than altering an existing circuit?
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Created On: 07 January 2013 09:14 PM
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 07 January 2013 09:14 PM
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sparkingchip

Posts: 6053
Joined: 18 January 2003

From the Voltimum website

"The Government has declared Part P to be a success and has announced plans to streamline and improve electrical safety. It signalled its intention to focus notification requirements on higher risk jobs, such as the installation of new circuits. This reflects the recommendation of the joint submission made by the ECA and NICEIC in its response to the consultation on Building Regulations in early 2012"

So explain to me please, why is installing a new circuit a higher risk than altering an existing circuit?

Andy
 07 January 2013 09:30 PM
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spinlondon

Posts: 4439
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Because a new circuit has to be notified, whereas altering an existing circuit (unless it's in a kitchen or special location) doesn't.
As such there's a greater risk that people will use un registered tradesmen to save money by not having to pay for notification.
 07 January 2013 09:32 PM
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daveparry1

Posts: 6210
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I suppose the thinking behind it was that an existing circuit would (should) be properly installed so any problems would only be the modified parts, whereas a whole circuit could be wrong from one end to the other? Doesn't make a lot of sense but I suppose they had to start somewhere,

Dave.
 07 January 2013 09:49 PM
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jcm256

Posts: 1868
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More government talk and doubts:
213. Question 4 sought views on the second of the two main deregulatory elements
of the consultation - the third-party inspection and testing of electrical work. In
relation to the basic question of whether this option should be available, there
were 146 responses. Of these, 75% supported the proposal, 15% did not and
10% did not know. Most of the categories of respondent showed strong support
for the idea - citing the potential benefits for DIY-ers and electricians outside of
competent person schemes of alternative, less-costly ways of having work
approved.
73
214. However, three of the four organisations that run competent person schemes
expressed strong reservations with the approach - citing the potential for it to
see many electricians opting out of membership of a competent person scheme
and thus undermining the benefits so far delivered by Part P (as well as
meaning that the additional consumer protection offered by work carried out by
a member of a competent person scheme is lost). In addition, a number of
other respondents questioned whether it was appropriate for anyone other than
the actual installer to take responsibility for the adequacy of the work. There
were also doubts expressed about whether costs savings would turn out to be
achievable in practice.
Third-party inspection and testing
All who
responded
Builders /
Developers
Building
Occupier
Designers/
Engineers/
Surveyors
Manufacturer
215. Paragraph 41 of the consultation set out the two alternative ways in which thirdparty
inspection and testing might offer a cheaper approach to gaining approval
of electrical work.
216. The first of the two would see a qualified person issuing a condition report which
would then be submitted to the building control body, but with a reduced fee
being payable to reflect the fact that a further inspection and test would not be
necessary. Seventy-three of the 128 respondents supported this option. There
was strong support from building services engineers (12 of the 13 supported)
and to a lesser extent from electrical installers (19 of 31) and local authority
building control (19 of 28). However, even many of those that supported this
option highlighted the necessity of ensuring that the person doing the third-party
inspection and test was appropriately qualified and what this amounted to
needed to be clarified. There was unanimous opposition to this approach from
the four competent person scheme organisations that responded due to a
mixture of fundamental disagreement with the notion of third-party testing and
inspection, concern that the proposal did not properly identify what a competent
electrician would be and concern that a condition report would not be suitable
for the task. More generally, respondents who had doubts about this option also
feared that those doing the test and inspection may be unreasonably
demanding in terms of the standard of work required (in some instances as a
way of making more money through further work)
http://data.parliament.uk
 07 January 2013 10:20 PM
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sparkingchip

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I am happy to state that in my personal opinion it is in fact often the case that it is the lower risk option to install a new circuit, and therefore, altering an existing circuit is actually often the higher risk option.

Andy
 07 January 2013 10:26 PM
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daveparry1

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That's probably true if the new circuit is being installed by someone who's competent Andy but a new circuit installed by someone without necessary knowledge is likely to be more of a danger than an addition i'd say?

Dave.
 07 January 2013 10:29 PM
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slittle

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I'll be happy when they completely scrap the enforcement/registration bits of "part p" and instead regulate the whole industry properly.

It's going to be interesting to see how many people leave the schemes ??

On a related topic, when did we last hear of any one being fined for breaching the rules ?


Stu
 08 January 2013 12:23 AM
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whjohnson

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Its interesting to read the latest ESC 'Switched On' rag this month. The whole emphasis has now changed from getting everyone registered and pushing part p to the consumer, towards fires caused by faulty cut-outs and the campaigning for more frequent inspections by the network operators.
Also towards fires caused by faulty (or the misuse of) appliances.

It seems the scam operators have now realized that the game is up and they ain't gonna get rich from the compulsory registration/notifications dream any longer.

Oh, and Phil Buckle looks like he's been on the pies again.

-------------------------
Political correctness is a doctrine, fostered by a delusional, illogical minority, and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a turd by the clean end.
 08 January 2013 01:28 AM
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spinlondon

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Originally posted by: slittle
On a related topic, when did we last hear of any one being fined for breaching the rules ?


There was I believe a case at Harlow Magistrates of an electrician being found guilty and fined for non-compliance with the building regulations. I also believe it was not just Part P that he failed to comply with.
 08 January 2013 01:07 PM
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WiredScience

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Originally posted by: sparkingchip

So explain to me please, why is installing a new circuit a higher risk than altering an existing circuit?

Andy


Perhaps they assume (incorrectly?) that the modified part of circuit will use the same size cable as the existing, but a new 32A MCB may be dropped in with a bit of 1mm TE by someone who doesn't have a clue?

Obviously even using the same size cable for the mods, it is possible to exceed max Zs and render the circuit "less safe"....
 08 January 2013 01:21 PM
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KFH

Posts: 205
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The only prosecutions I have seen are added on to other offenses which were usually gas related and the main case of the prosecution.

I do not think there is any difference between the danger level of a new circuit or addition to a circuit, it depends on who is doing the work and how much design and testing is done as well as their competence.
 09 January 2013 07:17 AM
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ebee

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It`s a deliberate ploy in order to prevent lawmakers from being accused of joined up thinking.

Whereas in the real world, additions and alterations are at least as liable to bodging as new circuits. Probably more so!

www.WFandFOBrigade

-------------------------
Regards,
Ebee (M I S P N)

Knotted cables cause Lumpy Lektrik
 09 January 2013 09:44 AM
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AJJewsbury

Posts: 11467
Joined: 13 August 2003

It's typical "line-in-the-sand" politicking. They're just working on the basis that they need to make some things notifiable, without making everything notifiable - so the important thing is that they need a line. Where exactly the line is drawn is of lesser importance. (Like borders in the desert, it really doesn't matter that much which pair of sand dunes the border is drawn on the map - as long as there is a border.) It's probably more down to what's simple to describe in words than any real physical difference between the sand a few inches each side of the line.
- Andy.
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