PAT Testing

Portable Appliance Testing (PAT) is the term used to describe the examination of electrical appliances and equipment to ensure they are safe to use.

More formal visual inspection and testing by a competent person may also be required at appropriate intervals, depending upon the type of equipment and the environment in which it is used.

Guideline on Managing Safety in the Use of Portable Electrical Equipment in the Workplace.

Section 81: Electrical Portable Equipment.

portable equipment which is—

(i) exposed to conditions causing deterioration liable to result in danger, and

(ii) supplied at a voltage exceeding 125 volts alternating current,


(I) visually checked by the user before use, and

(II) periodically inspected by a competent person, appropriate to the nature,

location and use of the equipment.

(2) An employer shall ensure, where appropriate, that a competent person

(a) tests any portable equipment described in paragraph (1)(c)(i) and (ii), and

(b) certifies whether or not the portable equipment (including any cables and plugs)

was, on the day of test, as far as could reasonably be ascertained, safe and without risk to persons coming into direct or indirect contact with any live part of the equipment.

(3) If the certificate of the competent person referred to in paragraph (2) indicates that the portable equipment tested was not, on the day of the test, safe and without risk, as described in that paragraph, the employer shall ensure that the equipment is not used until it is made safe and certified as such in compliance with paragraph (2).

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