Ian Carnell

Guardian – A Complete Managed Compliance Service for the rail sector

Fixed wire electrical inspection and testing is a legal requirement for organisations in all sectors, including rail, to satisfy the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989.

Chopping and changing between suppliers in order to find the lowest possible price can lead to a number of issues, not least the risk of serious injury.

Guardian’s Complete Managed Compliance Service was developed over several years in order to alleviate these issues and give organisations a customer-focused solution.

Ian Carnall, Managing Director of Guardian, has written an article for railbusinessdaily.com with more details.

Why is a Complete Managed Compliance Service necessary?

There are a number of reasons but certainly in our experience at Guardian Electrical Compliance Ltd (Guardian), since the advent of the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989, there has always been an ad-hoc approach to inspection and testing.

A programme of testing is complete by one supplier, another supplier completes remedial works, but records are rarely consolidated by the client’s dutyholder. The dutyholder changes his job, the cycle starts again and the end result more often than not is a lack of record traceability, accountability, or even an awareness from management of the position they could find themselves in, should there be a breach of the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989 (EaWR 1989). Unfortunately, the situation is commonplace throughout all working environments, including in the rail sector, which simply shouldn’t be the case in today’s marketplace, given technological advancements combined with a collective knowledge of the legal requirements.

A little more detail

All clients have, I’m sure, several suppliers of fixed wire electrical inspection and testing services. The suppliers come to site, undertake the work, supply reports on time and everyone is happy. The client has discharged their dutyholder responsibilities under Regulation 3 of EaWR 1989, i.e. ‘matters which are within your control’.

The client rarely bothers the supplier regarding the accuracy and content of the reports. From his perspective, the periodic inspection and testing box has been ticked. But too often, clients don’t receive records and when they do, they are full of limitations, lack of testing and non-identification of circuit designations. Unfortunately, this is an endemic problem within the electrical compliance industry, which ultimately leaves the dutyholder exposed should there be a breach of the EaWR 1989.

A Complete Managed Compliance Service – how has it been achieved?

Customer care and customer service are not phrases that are generally used in our sphere of business. However, Guardian saw this as an opportunity and began in earnest developing a customer-focused service in 2010.

Over several years and with significant investment, Guardian developed TraQit, our standard medium of real-time interactive website reporting. This ensures dutyholders are in control of items such as reports and drawings at all times. Together with this industry-leading technology, Guardian authors a dutyholder handbook and a suite of practical guidance notes, which, amongst other issues, illustrate how compliance with EaWR 1989 can be achieved in a 24/7 working environment.

Over the years our service delivery has evolved:

 Testing specifications and technical documents have been written for many hospitals, universities and blue chip organisations, including in the rail sector

 We chair a number of client dutyholder committees

 We teach the industry – BS7671: 18th Edition, EaWR 1989 and dutyholder courses

 We provide a total cradle to grave solution

Guardian Technology – TraQit & QR Codes

During the testing programme, clients could be adding additional circuits or certifying corrective remedial actions, which give rise to additional certification. For example, if there have been 15 changes to a distribution board over a three-year testing programme, there will be 15 electrical installation condition reports stored in chronological order. We thereby deliver continuous evidence of monitoring and maintenance as required by EaWR 1989.

A recent addition to work in tandem with TraQit, are Quick Response Codes (QR Codes). Each individual distribution unit subjected to inspection and testing or drawing will have a visible and accessible QR code affixed on the relevant unit. The TraQit app is available as a free download on iPhone, Android and Windows Phone.

Once downloaded, you can simply scan over the QR Code with your device, input your assigned TraQit login details and the electrical installation condition report for the relevant distribution unit will open via your TraQit website. The result is a far more efficient and safer system of working.”

By Ian Carnall, Managing Director of Guardian