We have a legal obligation to make sure that the electrical installation in your property is safe. We carry out electrical testing every five years in our properties. We test the electrical equipment in communal areas each year.
Electrical safety checks
It’s recommended best practice that an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) is carried out every five years.
The test can take between two to four hours to complete. We’ll check to make sure there’s no deterioration to cabling or to any switches or sockets. We’ll replace any broken accessories and repair any faults we may find, making sure your home is safe for continued use.
We’ll also check to see if your smoke alarms are present and in working order.
A letter will be sent to you confirming the date when your electrical safety check is due. If the appointment isn’t convenient, you must contact us as soon as possible so we can rearrange.
It’s really important that you keep your electrical safety check appointment. If you fail to give us access to your home so that we can carry out the check, for example by missing your appointment or not giving us enough notice that you won’t be in, we’ll take all available steps to meet our legal obligations. This may involve taking formal and legal action against you so that we can gain access to your property. Any costs incurred from taking formal action will be charged to you.
If only your home seems to be affected and not your neighbours, it might be that a faulty lightbulb or appliance has caused your power to trip off. You should check your trip box to find out.
If you can’t locate anything causing the electricity to trip off, and it isn’t a full power cut, you’ll need to report the fault to us so that we can send an electrician out to investigate.
If all your power is off and you think there’s a power cut, you can check online with Northern Powergrid (the local network operator).
You can also call 105* no matter who provides your electricity. It’s a free number and they will put you through to your local network operator.
During a power cut:
Be prepared for a power cut before it happens:
Northern Powergrid and Northern Gas Network Priority Services Register
Power cuts or an interruption to your gas supply can cause worry, especially if you or someone you care for is vulnerable. You could benefit from joining the free Priority Services Register if you, or someone you care for:
They will give you extra support or advice in a power cut or interruption to your gas supply. To find out more about the service or to join, please visit the Northern Powergrid website here or the Northern Gas Network website here.
Beware of fake and unsafe electrical products sold online
Keep heaters away from anything that could catch fire
Don't overload your sockets
Water and electricity don't mix - keep mains items out of the bathroom
Like all electrical items, mobility scooters, e-bikes and e-scooters with a lithium battery can cause a fire risk. If the batteries become damaged or begin to fail, they can start fires that spread quickly out of control.
You can reduce the risk of a lithium battery catching fire by:
When charging lithium batteries:
Before a failing lithium battery catches fire, there are often a few warning signs. If you see any of these signs you'll need to take immediate action to stay safe and reduce the risk of fire:
What you should do if your lithium battery is a fire risk
If your battery shows any of these signs of failing, immediately turn off the device and unplug it from the power source.
Call the device manufacturer or retailer for further instructions. If the device starts smoking or catches fire, raise the alarm, get out, stay out and call 999 immediately.
Disposing of a lithium battery
Lithium batteries shouldn’t be placed in your wheelie bin or communal bin due to the fire risk they pose. Instead you should dispose of them safely at your local household waste recycling centres.
In our independent living schemes
We have specific guidance for residents living in our independent living schemes:
With energy prices sky high, one of the growing crimes in the UK is meter cheating. This is when a person tampers with a meter so it doesn’t record how much electricity or gas is being used, or tries to bypass the meter completely.
It’s very dangerous and causes injuries and death to many innocent people each year:
Please don’t ever be tempted to try and tamper with your gas or electricity meters. It puts you, your family, your neighbours, and others in danger. If you suspect a meter has been tampered with, please report it immediately. Visit the Stay Energy Safe website here.
If you’re worried now and struggling to pay your energy bills, our Tenants First Service can help and support you. Please get in touch as soon as possible.
We test all our electrical equipment in communal areas, from small stairways with just a few lights to our larger more complex sheltered communal areas, to make sure all our buildings are well maintained and safe for continued use.
All the lifts in our buildings are serviced monthly and have a thorough inspection every six months.
10th floor, Gateway Plaza, off Sackville St, Barnsley, South Yorkshire, S70 2RD
Berneslai Homes Limited is a company controlled by Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council. A company limited by guarantee, registered in England and Wales, number 4548803