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Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 7,520
pauluk Offline OP
I came upon this thread in another forum, in which a British builder is asking about taking 110V power tools to Australia:
And one of the replies:
If your work is in the building trade and you have a lot of 110v power tools I would recommend selling them in the UK. I had a lot and thought as they're 110 they'd be safer so I brought them [spent ages cleaning them as well].

Here in QLD your power tools and by tools I mean everything extension leads, kettles, radios and even your sandwich toaster [the tradies here have it all ] need testing and tagging for compliance every three months by a "competent person", cost's about $5-$10 per item. Unfortunately by their design your transformer will not pass the compliance test rendering all your tools useless for working "on site" I now have a lot of 110v tools that are only any good for using at home.

NSW insist on testing on a monthly basis and there is talk QLD will adopt simlar tactics quite soon [probably about 20 yrs time]
Penalties for having untagged equipment are quite harsh for repeat offenders.
Seems to me that the Austrlian authorities are getting carried away with workplace safety.

Would any of our Aussie members care to comment?

Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 200
I don't know about our Aussie members, but there are [possible] moves afoot to bring such legislation into more meaningful play over here.

I have a colleague in the HSE and she has told me that they are formulating some kind of plan to press for regular testing and tagging - probably every 6 months. This would apply to ANY equ. used for trade purposes, whether fixed/portable, sole or not - in line with SAW legislation.

I don't have any qualms about it personally, although I think the Au regime is a tad prescriptive at one month! I test all my gear pretty regularly; probably three times a year or if it gets dropped/wet etc. Have already surprised myself having to fail a much-loved drill !! [Linked Image] However, it's one thing to test your own stuff for nothing - quite another to pay £££s for someone else to to it; especially if they're not sparkies with a PAT box.

I must admit I tend to concentrate the testing on the 240V stuff and not so much on the 110V.

Why does the UK 110VCT tranny fail in Oz? What do they do with theirs? [Linked Image]

Like Paul says; lets hear it from the Aussie colleagues!! [Linked Image]

[This message has been edited by uksparky (edited 08-04-2004).]

If hindsight were foresight, we'd all be millionaires!
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 186
Mmm, But if we cant get insurance to do PAT testing who's going to do it? Uk how did you get on with the insurance co regarding the PAT testing premium? Seems as though HSE and Insurance co need to get together and have a bit of a chat about these things before they steam roll any legislation through otherwise we might all be back to a good old hammer and chissel must have a look for my old rawlplug tool!!!

Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 200
HA!! LOL Aland [Linked Image] [Linked Image]

I haven't got far with the insurance biz yet... I made no progress at all on Monday and have been too busy since!

Yeah...I agree about the communication issue you raise; but isn't that just typical of the way we do things of late in UK?? [Linked Image]

I'll keep you abreast of the insurance malarchy...

If hindsight were foresight, we'd all be millionaires!
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 7,520
pauluk Offline OP
I can't see why a UK 110V CTE site transformer would be disallowed in Australia.

Is there maybe a requirement for all hand-held power tools to be RCD protected, no matter what voltage? If so, there's no reason why an RCD cannot be put on the 110V secondary to add this required protection.

Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 202
I am working full time as an electronics technician for a large multinational company & also working as a first year electrical apprentice in the Northern Territory of Australia. The full time job has mandatory electrical testing but on some of the building sites I have been on its 'anything goes' with no testing of tools on one site I was on. Most building sites have mandatory tagging & testing of tools & leads. No idea what the drama with the 110VAC transformer is.

[This message has been edited by 32VAC (edited 08-09-2004).]

Joined: Jul 2002
Posts: 8,443
Likes: 3
Now, I aren't from Australia, but I am reasonably close.
The only tools we use are of the 230V variety, fed via an RCD.
Drills, saws and the like are all standard Mains Voltage units.

Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 7,520
pauluk Offline OP
So would there be anything in the NZ workplace health & safety orders to prevent the use of UK 110V tools with a CTE xfmr?

Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,391
Paul forgive me for going a little off topic but the US has a similar testing requirement.

If your transformer was not UL listed I would turn it away from the site, of course you would not need it here. [Linked Image]


Bob Badger
Construction & Maintenance Electrician
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 456
In Ontario Canada anyway, some low run electrical gear is a approved by the Ontario Hydro "Special testing authority"

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