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OLIVER FREEMAN: THIS WAS AN INTERESTING FIND IN A CAFÉ RECENTLY…
I can’t begin to understand the thought process that someone went through to justify this. The only hope here is that it wasn’t an electrician.
As we don’t know the reasons behind it, we can only guess as to why they’ve done this. As it’s a café, maybe they didn’t want their customers to use the spare socket-outlet on the two-gang outlet. I can only assume that by switching the socket-outlet off, they felt it was safe, where in fact, the complete opposite has been accomplished.
Before the days of readily available R1+R2 adaptors for testing, it was often the case that inspectors made up their own, and this may be one of those, that has been left behind after testing.
Regardless of its origins, the pins of the BS 1363 plug chassis are now exposed to touch by anyone that comes into contact with them. If the socket-outlet switch is inadvertently pushed into the ‘on’ position, there is direct access to live parts.
Even in the off position, if there is a potential difference on the cpc from leakage currents etc., there is a possibility of a perceived shock or worse. As this is a café, ordinary persons and children are at high risk of electric shock.
This modification shows an inept lack of knowledge of the dangers associated with electricity. This is precisely the reason EICRs need to be carried out regularly.
Although arguably, not technically the remit of BS 7671, I feel that the modified BS 1363 plug top is being used as a part of the fixed installation, so it should be dealt with accordingly on the BS 7671 EICR.
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