Rented Accomodation

While the risks of electric shock or electrical fire are usually small, electricity can be dangerous. Whatever type of accommodation you are living in, you should be aware of the danger signs.
The safety of appliances you bring into your accommodation is your responsibility. Your landlord or college should have a system for inspecting and testing portable equipment they provide. If you are in any doubt as to the safety of an appliance - get it tested.


Signs to watch out for include:
• Frayed, cut or damaged leads
• Cracked or damaged cases on plugs or appliances
• Burn marks on plugs, leads or appliances
• Blowing fuses
• Loose cord grips in plugs or appliances


Fuses in plugs that blow repeatedly indicate a problem - NEVER replace the fuse with one of a higher rating than recommended or some other conductive material as this may lead to overheating and a possible fire.


New appliances should come pre-fitted with a BS 1363 13 Amp plug. Other appliances should also be fitted with a plug conforming to BS 1363; if your plug is not marked as conforming to this standard, get it replaced.
Essential Safety Tips:


• Do not attempt to insert anything other than a BS 1363 plug into a socket-outlet and do not use shaver sockets or shaver adapters to run appliances other than electric shavers. Never use any mains powered electrical appliance with wet hands.
• Do not attempt to insert anything other than a BS 1363 plug into a socket-outlet and do not use shaver sockets or shaver adapters to run appliances other than electric shavers. Never use any mains powered electrical appliance with wet hands.
• When in the bathroom, never use electrical appliances plugged into the mains.


Remember, your landlord is responsible for maintaining the electrical installation in the premises and for having it inspected and tested at least every 10 years to check its condition. Danger signs include:


• Old, badly worn or broken switches and socket-outlets
• Fuses blowing or circuit breakers/RCDs tripping
• A burning or 'marzipan' smell from overheating wiring


Do not attempt to extend, repair or replace damaged or worn-out parts of the electrical installation yourself. Get your landlord to employ a competent electrical contractor.