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Electrical Safety Roundtable to raise consumer awareness

The Electrical Safety Roundtable has launched a website and guidance portal designed to raise consumer awareness of home safety matters.

The portal makes available a new framework of home safety checklists and certificates.

They provide a means for landlords to keep track of the important steps necessary to meet their duty of care and comply with key legal obligations while giving tenants the chance to make informed choices and rent with confidence.

Electrical Safety Roundtable chairman Chris Bielby said: “Ensuring consumers are aware of the risks posed by hazards in the home and understand the steps they can take to reduce those risks are the most important challenges faced by our industry today.

“We have expanded the range of issues the roundtable considers, creating safety guidance that covers electrical safety alongside other important household checks.”

Mr Bielby said research suggests that around 16% of tenants in this sector could be living with electrical hazards, and standards are lower here than in any other form of tenure.

Despite widespread industry calls for regular electrical safety checks during a recent review of the sector, the government did not respond.

“That’s why it’s so important that our industry is able to work together to find practical solutions and provide consistent consumer advice,” Mr Bielby added.

The Electrical Safety Roundtable has also recently made the case for electrical product labelling. Currently, specialist electrical equipment such as fuse boards, which many argue should only be installed by a competent electrician, can be purchased over the counter without warnings or guidance regarding safe installation.

A voluntary agreement has recently been reached by a number of retailers, through the British Retail Consortium, to label electrical goods clearly with standardised wording.

The Electrical Safety Roundtable are currently working with this group and other key stakeholders to help standardise this simple solution to a longstanding problem as well as the electrical safety advice available on consumer facing websites.

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