According to Government statistics, each year on average 10 people die and about 750 are seriously injured in accidents involving unsafe electrical installations in the home. To help address this issue, the Construction Industry Deregulation Task Force recommended in 1995 that electrical safety requirements should be included in the Building regulations.
Part P of the building regulations is intended to increase the safety of households by improving the design, installation, inspection and testing of electrical installations in dwellings when these installations are being newly built, extended or altered.
Q. What is Part P?
A. From January 2005 electrical installation work in dwellings became subject to a new Building regulation - 'Part P'. This is enforced by local authorities and failure to comply would be a criminal offence. The legal requirement is simply stated: 'Fixed electrical installations in dwellings shall be suitably designed, installed, inspected and tested so as to provide reasonable protection against their being the source of a fire or a cause of injury to persons'.
Q. What work will have to be certified?
A. All domestic electrical installation work, whether professional or DIY, must comply with BS7671. Failure to comply would leave the installer open to legal action, and liable for any injury, loss or remedial that may result. The only domestic work for which either self certification or notification will not be required will be for some minor work (generally work not involving the provision of a new circuit). The replacement of a consumer unit will not qualify as minor works. In kitchens and areas of increased risk, such as bathroom, or shower room, a garden or a swimming pool or sauna, all work, minor or not, will need either to be self certified or notified.
Q. How does it work?
A. After completion of electrical works the electrician completes an installation certificate and you will receive a copy. The installation is registered to the local authority. The NICEIC will then post the Part P certificate directly to you, the customer.