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The Case For Providing A Means To Ensure Safe Temporary Isolation In Domestic And Similar Premises

37 - The Case For Providing A Means To Ensure Safe Temporary Isolation In Domestic And Similar Premises

  • Proposer
  • Status Closed
  • Urgent No
  • Synopsis

    The Smart Meter programme presents a valuable opportunity to address a longstanding barrier-to-trade problem related to home electrical installations across Great Britain. This issue concerns the temporary de-energisation of electricity supplies to domestic and similar premises to enable electricians to carry out certain electrical installation work safely, including the replacement of consumer units (fuseboxes). It is estimated that over 400,000 temporary de-energisations need to be made each year for this purpose.

    The Electrical Safety Council originally recommended that the safest and most convenient solution would be the inclusion of an isolating switch in the smart meter specification. However, with both the first and second iterations of that design now agreed, it is clear that another path must be used to resolve this long-standing issue, so we are advocating an alternative approach achievable by extending the provisions of Part P Competent Persons Schemes.

    Please find attached a full briefing on this issue and the various options available.

    The DCUSA Standing Issues Group reviewed the responses to the DIF 037 Request For Information and concluded that many of the Supplier respondents were not in favour of the change. Most Suppliers and Meter Operators (MoPs) were not happy with the concept of having a third party individual electrician accessing the cut out and removing the voltage which may lead to problems measuring the energy and the meter function. Members considered that Ofgem, the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) and the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) would be best placed to consider this issue and provide a direction. The DCUSA SIG agreed to close the issue. It was noted that DCP 038 had been withdrawn for the same reason.