There is an argument that, just as in the gas industry, electrical installations and installers should be regulated for the safety of consumers. Currently, without any professional training or qualification, anyone can call themselves an electrician. They can advertise and carry out work, potentially threatening lives and property without any fear of action. Government statistics show that faulty fires and the damage caused to property by these fires in Scotland alone totals around. £9.6m.
Much of the cost of faulty electrical installation is believed to lie in malfunctioning installations or poorly finished work that needs to be replaced. A review of academic studies and literature from the UK, other countries and related industries indicates that effective regulation would lead to better qualified electricians, decreasing the incidence of faulty work by half. SELECT, the trade body for electrical contractors in Scotland are campaigning for the introduction of measures that would set standards and as a consequence ensure that only correctly qualified individuals could hold the title of electrician.
Of the campaign, Claire Heyes, FCCA, Chief Executive of the AESM said: “The Association of Electrical Safety Managers, which represents professional electrical safety managers in the social housing sector, acknowledges the importance of using qualified professionals in all aspects of building maintenance work. It is vital to the safety of those living and working in buildings to only use fully qualified people to design and carry out those works. The AESM fully endorses the campaign being run by SELECT, the trade body for electrical contractors in Scotland, to introduce “Protection of Title” which would ensure that anyone calling themselves an electrician would have to hold appropriate qualifications.”