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  1. martin mcguinness
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    martin mcguinness madspark

    Location:
    fife
    looking for a bit of guidance on this one.
    i was helping a mate fit a kitchen on a site and there was a visit from health and safety normally he works in domestic all the time so all the tools are 230v not 110v. So as he normally works domestic so using 110v is a pain he is a bit like me with the tools so all festool, Makita, Dewatlt etc.
    Back to the question they pointed out that he shouldnt be using mains voltage tools. I asked them to clarify HSG 141 paragraph 70 (google a great thing )they just drew me a dirty look so i pointed out that the house we were working in as its a new build all the circuits are RCD protected and all tools are pat tested and in date. They couldnt give me an answer and just walked away
    Can anyone clarify the law on this one as i know its the norm to use 110v on a site but if you read HSG 141 / 70 is it ok to use mains voltage ?????
    i know using 110v which should be centre tapped is voltage limiting and an RCD is current limiting protecion
    opinions welcome but more interested in the law
    cheers
     
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  2. plugsandsparks
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    plugsandsparks Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Chesterfield
    As far as i can say, the law does not prescribe whether to use 110v or 240V, the accepted wisdom is you do a risk assessment of the working conditions onsite and based on this 110V or 230V or even battery only is acceptable.
    e.g. New construction, work area wet/damp, high likelyhood of cable damage due to rough site conditions 110V or battery.
    Existing site, nice and dry, short manageable cable leads, 240V .
    For me, i manage my own H&S and use 240v equipment as lugging a TX around hurts my back, ha. Never has an issue (i guess being a sparky helps), if the site is particularly risky, then you are down to batteries anyway
     
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  3. telectrix
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    telectrix Scouser and Proud of It Trusted Advisor

    Top Poster Of Month

    Location:
    cheshire/staffordshire
    Business Name:
    Telectrix
    what he said^^^^^^.
     
  4. martin mcguinness
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    martin mcguinness madspark

    Location:
    fife
    cheers
    i thought it was funny to quote a health and safety guidline lets hope it dont bite me in the bum later.
    it was a fourth floor flat at the final stage, the kitchen is the last thing fitted so more like working in a normal domestic situation
     
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  5. spinlondon
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    spinlondon Trusted Advisor

    Location:
    Harlow Essex
    Other than site rules, there is nothing prohibiting the use of 230V on sites.
     
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  6. Billsays
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    Billsays Regular EF Member

    Location:
    Essex
    Often if you try to be clever the main contractor will just say its Keepmoat/Mears/United living, (whoever) policy....... Comply or leave site.
     
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  7. seltechpc
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    seltechpc Active EF Member

    Location:
    Highlands
    Business Name:
    Seltech Power & Communications Ltd
    The HSE never commit themselves, leaving it to others to make the decisions. Oft quoted "carry out risk assessment". Most principle contractors will not allow 240V tools on site as it is the least risk option for them. They are not interested in the fact that it hurts to carry a Tx or you do not have 110V tools.
    They are legally responsible for all safety on site and it is less risky for them to specify no 240V appliances on site, the odd one will allow it if you submit a full risk assessment, it is about covering backsides, not common sense.
     
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  8. Wilko
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    Wilko Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Berkshire
    Business Name:
    Wilko Electrics
    Likewise, I'm not aware of any law stating 230V cannot be used. AFAIK no one has ever been killed by the 110V isolated supplies (maybe a few broken toes) and I think that's why many make it mandatory (?).
     
  9. Chivers
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    Chivers EF Member

    I use 18V Makita, can't fault it apart from the wheels on the bag have fallen off. Much of European workers use 230 Volt tools with RCD & RCBO protection on the continent.

    All a bit grey really but:

    HSE :
    480 If mains voltage has to be used, the risk of injury is high if equipment, tools, leads etc are damaged, or there is a fault. Residual current devices (RCDs or trip devices as they are sometimes called) with a rated tripping current not greater than 30 mA with no time delay will be needed to ensure that the current is promptly cut off if contact is made with any live part.
    481 RCDs must be installed and treated with great care if they are to save life in an accident. They have to be kept free of moisture and dirt and protected against vibration and mechanical damage. They need to be properly installed and enclosed, including sealing of all cable entries. They should be checked daily by operating the test button. If mains voltage is to be used, make sure that tools can only be connected to sockets protected by RCDs. By installing an RCD at the start of the work, immediate protection can be provided. Even so, RCDs cannot give the assurance of safety that cordless equipment or a reduced low-voltage (such as 110V) system provides.
     
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