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Electrical Safety First welcomes new draft regulations for mandatory electrical safety checks

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Electrical Safety Checks
Electrical safety checks could soon be mandatory in England's social housing. Image credit: Shutterstock.com

Electrical Safety First has come out in support of the UK Government’s new draft regulations which could see mandatory electrical safety checks required in England’s social housing.

In the wake of the Grenfell Tower disaster, Electrical Safety First has been one of the biggest proponents of enacting new legal requirements for landlords across the UK to commit to regular electrical safety inspections, both in private and social housing. 

Following Electrical Safety First’s extensive campaigning, the Government enacted new laws in 2020 that introduced five yearly electrical safety checks in the private rental sector, protecting millions of people from electrical hazards.

However, in a major step towards equal electrical safety protection, the new draft regulations would establish electrical safety checks for social housing tenants by amending current legislation so that it also applied to ‘a registered provider of social housing’.

Published earlier this week, the Social Housing Draft (Regulation) Bill, would pave the way to finally remove the inequality in the law whereby private tenants are protected by mandatory five yearly electrical safety checks but social tenants are not. These protections could benefit over 4 million households living in the social rented sector and create parity with the private rented sector.

Commenting on the draft publication of the regulations, Lesley Rudd Chief Executive of Electrical Safety First, noted, “The draft regulations are a real step in the right direction to ensuring that social housing tenants are better protected from electrical dangers and that the housing sector and landlords have clarity on safety standards. We look forward to working very closely with the Government and await the announcement of the consultation.”

The Government is yet to consult on electrical safety standards in the social rented sector and any secondary legislation would be subject to the outcome of the consultation, due to take place in the summer of this year.

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