Making a strong connection 

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The electrical industry has seen many changes over the years, from regulations to product research and development. But what do installers need to consider when it comes to navigating the complex world of regulations? John Brodie, product manager for fastenings and fixings at HellermannTyton, discusses how installers can stay on top of regulations to deliver strong connections every time. 

From harnesses fixing the engine within a truck to securing cables onboard a ship, metal fixings are robust, fire-resistant and can be installed within the most arduous of conditions, making them a desirable must-have within an installer’s toolkit. 

The nature of these vital components, however, means adhering to regulations and staying on top of training is critical. 

Keep in check

Cable management is important in many fields, such as IT, communications, power distribution, facility wiring, local area networks and much more. Keeping all occupants safe whilst out on the job is imperative – which is where regulations come in. 

One particular example is the BS7671:2018 IET 18th Edition Wiring Regulations, which came into effect in January 2019. The 18th Edition Wiring Regulation states that plastic clips should not be used as the sole or “main” support for cables, as there is potential for the fire to melt plastic support cables which could cause substantial damage and potential safety risks. 

Designed to support the increasing market requirement and the industry’s required regulations, HellermannTyton’s range of metal fixings can be used within a number of industries. HellermannTyton released its range of metal fixings consisting of Spring Steel Wire Clips and a Fireproof Plate series, both compliant with BS7671:2018 IET 18th Edition Wiring Regulations in order to provide fire-resistant support for cables.

As cable management requirements adapt, so too do the regulations – but where does the onus sit when ensuring all safety standards are met? Manufacturers have a duty to ensure new products developed are compliant, but it’s also critical that those using these products have access to the training needed for correct installation. 

Keep generations learning

In a study conducted by the IET, 70% of employers reported that the lack of skills in the external market is the quality of young people entering or seeking to enter the industry to pursue a technical career1

It is vital manufacturers and employers offer the opportunity for all employees and installers to develop their skills and knowledge on new products, methods of installation and new regulations. This combined with efforts to encourage more young people to take up a career in the electrical industry will help close this skills gap. 

The HellermannTyton ACADEMY, based at its Cannock facility, aids in product development and learning. Specially-developed training sessions and virtual reality equipment offer the possibility to learn about HellermannTyton’s products and new developments, as well as different applications. 

For example, HellermannTyton’s VR software enables users to delve into five different virtual worlds and experience how cable management solutions are used in real-life scenarios.

The first scenario enables users to travel through the tower and nacelle of a wind turbine and view HellermannTyton’s products in-situ within it. The products can also be ‘picked up’ from their positions for closer inspection and then placed back.

Keep up

Whether you are a manufacturer or an installer, knowing your role and responsibilities when it comes to regulations is vital in order to work in a safe, secure environment as well as bridge the ever-growing skills gap. 

Manufacturers like HellermannTyton are developing products to meet new and future regulations as well as providing access to ongoing skills and training, to help installers navigate the regulation minefield.