MTCS Launches High Voltage Audit Programme
29 August 2023
MTCS (UK) Ltd, a specialist in competence and training for personnel involved in safety-critical activities in the energy sector, has launched a new High Voltage Safety Awareness programme for personnel operating, maintaining and/or testing high voltage equipment.
MTCS primarily supports organisations and personnel in the global maritime and offshore energy sectors through their portfolio of training courses and competence assessment and certification programmes.
Increasingly, MTCS has experienced more clients from shore-based industries seeking its specialist services.
Richard Warburton is the Managing Director at MTCS, he said: "Over recent years we have periodically adapted our core training courses at the request of shore-based companies unrelated to our maritime clients who, nonetheless, have a requirement for specialist high voltage training.
"These clients have ranged from facilities management businesses, a large commercial printers and a cleaning company working at a Premier League football stadium where their staff were frequently in close proximity to high voltage systems.
"It has become increasingly apparent that the work MTCS undertakes in the offshore energy and maritime sectors are in increasing demand across a broad spectrum of industries, hence taking the decision to roll-out our High Voltage Awareness Training Course in 2022 followed now by our High Voltage Safety Audit.”
Any organisation has a duty to ensure systems and procedures discussed during training are fully implemented at the worksite, and the High Voltage Audit looks into the detail of how this is done in practice.
It identifies areas where a company may make improvements to ensure they are compliant with the Electricity at Work Regulations and relevant industry guidelines, ensuring the concepts discussed on the training course are embedded into the daily activities of the company.
The audit takes a snapshot of safe working within a company’s daily activities and potentially identifies areas where improvements can be made to ensure they are fully compliant.
"Additionally, the audit ensures that employees and contractors are aware of their duties and responsibilities,” continues Richard. "Most importantly, it assists managers in identifying areas to improve across a range of activities.”
These activities include live testing procedures on high voltage equipment, risk assessments, methods of isolating high voltage equipment, use of PPE and the overall management and supervision of electrical safety.
"It will always be the position of MTCS that training is welcomed but training, passing exams and gaining a qualification does not guarantee future competence,” added Richard.
"A definition of competence we use is ‘The ability to perform a task safely, efficiently, and in accordance with company and/or industry guidelines and procedures’ and when it comes to working on or around high voltage equipment, these words take on even greater gravitas.”
Ensuring that employees and contractors fully comprehend and are aware of their duties and responsibilities under the Regulations is imperative for any organisation.
Although there will be a high degree of commonality, the scope of each audit will be bespoke to the client as established company best practices and work patterns will need to be taken into account.
The duration of the audit will be dependent upon the number of participants, location and nature of equipment in question and MTCS asks that interested parties make an initial enquiry to discuss their circumstances and requirements.
"MTCS is committed to working with companies across all industry sectors to help raise the standard of safety in the workplace,” concludes Richard. "Whether they are maritime and subsea energy companies or working in unrelated operations on the mainland, the danger posed from improper activities on or around high voltage equipment is very real.
"At present we are offering the High Voltage Audit for UK-based clients, however, there has already been interest from our international clients and there is potential scope for rolling this out to them in the future.”
MTCS Workplace High Voltage Electrical Safety Audit