DIY is something of a sticky situation for both tradespeople and homeowners, but when it comes to electrical safety, mistakes or mistrust from either party could prove to be fatal. According to a news article published by Electrical Times a few days ago, electricians are the trade most often called out to rescue DIY jobs gone wrong, and half of severe electrical shocks are caused by failed or misguided DIY attempts. No puns about 'shocking statistics' here, but it is worrying to see such a widespread disregard and ignorance of electrical safety. We've all heard the warnings about not sticking utensils into toasters, but it seems that on the whole, the average citizen and even some professionals are not giving electrical safety the attention it deserves.

According to Electrical Times and the charity Electrical Safety First, young people have become more at risk due to the growing popularity of online tutorials, which can sometimes cause inexperienced individuals to carry out work that they are unfit to complete. Hand in hand with the skills crisis we're seeing in the professional sector, people under 35 are losing the ability to perform what would have once been described as 'basic skills', and are picking up their knowledge from untrustworthy resources on the web. Electrical Safety First has demonstrated the risks of such overly-ambitious and dangerous undertakings as part of their 'Don't Die for DIY' campaign, in a series of videos which can be viewed here. This demonstrates the risks that come from following unregulated advice, and the threat posed by undertaking electrical work without the proper training or experience. 

While it is possible to understand why homeowners would want to carry out electrical jobs themselves, with money being tight in many households and 'rouge traders' becoming a growing concern due to media exposure, the fact remains that these kind of undertakings often pose serious health and safety risks to everyone involved. In terms of the average homeowner, there needs to be an improved awareness of the knowledge and experience needed to carry out these dangerous projects, and in relation to the professional sector, there has to be a greater emphasis placed on keeping your skills up to date, and continuing to abide by the rules set out by regulatory bodies. 

If You're a DIY Enthusiast:

  • Don't be swayed by the financial allure of saving money by performing a DIY job! If things go wrong, which they very often do, you will eventually end up spending money on calling out an electrician to put things right. This could even cost you more than the original fee due to factors such as emergency call-out rates, and the increased attention required to rectify a botched job.
  • Know the risks - Qualified electricians have spent a long time training and gaining experience in their field; something which can't simply be supplemented with 'quick fix' options. Saving some money is not worth putting yourself and others at risk of receiving a fatal injury, so keep that in mind before starting your job.
  • Train Properly - If you are serious about performing DIY jobs yourself, then why not invest in your abilities and take one of our electrician courses? While our courses are intended to help people make electrical work their career, we can tailor our programmes to suit any individual's needs, making them more than suitable for someone who simply wants to undertake domestic work in their own home. Most importantly, you'll be taught by professional, accredited teaching staff with years of experience.
If You're a Professional:
  • In order to build a bond of trust with your clients, it is important that you always strive to provide them with an honest and courteous service. If people feel that they are being overcharged or inconvenienced in any way, it is highly unlikely that they will choose to hire your services (or those of another professional for that matter) in the future. Make sure that you display professionalism at all times, to instil confidence in your services and those of the sector as a whole.
  • Don't become overly confident, careless or take things for granted! As humans, our brains are constantly looking for ways to make things easier for ourselves, but when it comes to electrical safety and performing dangerous work at a professional level, this is a risk that simply cannot be taken. This goes for business owners and managers as well, who should always ensure that their employees are fully trained, and are following health and safety guidelines.
  • As well as new career courses, we also provide electrician courses for experienced professionals who need to refresh their skills or add additional knowledge to their portfolio. From Portable Appliance Testing to Combined Inspection and Testing, we have a range of courses to expand your professional knowledge and improve your ability to work safely.
For more information about any of our courses, get in touch with us today!