Hello and a warm welcome, especially as it's getting colder, to my circle of contacts and subscribers to our monthly MEPAT newsletter - or bi-monthly if you are also subscribing to our special “Newcastle Old and New – The Story So Far” newsletter on my very personal book project? Puzzled as to what this is about, well there is a small piece on this later on... this newsletter is mainly devoted to stories and safety issues [sometimes scary] on Electrical Health and Safety in the workplace and home office. We try our very best to advise and help you maintain your electrical equipment in the workplace or at home, I say at home as a lot of us have an office in our own house – whether you be self-employed or even working for national companies.
This interestingly leads nicely onto the next bit as I was planning to talk about the changing temperatures and how on – at least in our part of the world the seasons changed so very dramatically on the 1st of September, just as the kids were heading back to school. In fact it was like a light bulb switching on and off, one moment it was summer and the next it was autumn!! I supposed it was emphasised by the fact we have had one of the warmest [I held back saying hottest] summers on record, yes it rained from time to time – but hey its Britain, it rains here!!
A lot of us will be switching on heating systems for the first in maybes as much as six months; these heaters may also have been possibly buried in sheds and garages for a good part of the summer? I bet as I speak, that a lot of you will be dragging on the odd jumper or two out of the cupboard because you refuse to switch the heating until you have lost the feeling in your fingers!! But please be warned as these oil filled radiators, electric fans, and small element heaters and many more have not been switched on for a long time. They will, at the very least will be full of dust and fluff, which in some extreme cases could actually catch fire!
So here is what we suggest to saying safe AND warm:
Some of you will think this is over the top advice but, remember last winter and the winters before, you will have these heaters switched on for a good part of six months [yep that sounds depressing I know] so it is better to be safe than sorry!
- First check the plug is dry and the pins are in good condition – plug pins can especially get damaged in storage;
- Check the cables are intact for the same reasons as above;
- Depending on the type of electrical heaters you have, if you can see the element then dust and fluff can get in too... Take a long duster - you know the Ken Dodd type and give it a good clean out – ideally outside too as these will be very dusty…
- Do an initial “switch on” ideally well away from the office desks, filing cupboards paperwork etc, just in case?
- If you get a burning smell THEN SWITCH OFF IMMEDIATELY – when it cools down give it a good dusting again and do a trial switch on once again;
- Finally, if the plug gets hot or you get a burning smell again – SWITCH OFF IMMEDIATELY, seek advice or even give us a call. If it is just a small heater it might be cheaper just to bin it and get a new one. A few quid against injury – its not worth it!!
If you have any questions on the above, and any questions relating to electrical safety pop me an email or give me a call, contact details are below. I am only too happy to help!
Tales from the “Fry”
Below is our latest, “tales from the Fry” named after our own colourful, adopted cartoon character… In similarity to last month’s reports on the likelihood of domestic equipment catching fire – these stories are this time from the North East with reports concluded by the Tyne & Wear Fire and Rescue Services. Please click on the YouTube link below to find out more...
HSE eBulletin service: Health and safety myths..
These stories are sent to me by the HSE and are totally genuine – and downright daft!!
Case 371 - Golf club won’t put Committee meeting minutes on to a notice board due to health and safety
A golf club has stopped putting Committee meeting minutes on to the notice board for health and safety reasons
HSE Panel opinion
There are no conceivable health and safety reasons for not displaying documents such as minutes of a meeting on a notice board. It is totally mystifying that someone should suggest this.
Newcastle Old and New: the story so far?
As many of my friends and readers will know, I have been working on a long held dream to self-publish a school project book about Newcastle upon Tyne. I have also launched a second newsletter to detail the progress of this project further so I will keep this brief. We still have a crowdfund website page for the time being until I launch our own with more details on the book packages available. Although the campaign has officially finished I will continue with these “investments/advanced purchases” of books at the very least up to the publish date late in October 2015. To find out more please follow the link to; http://igg.me/at/Newcastle-Old-and-New-Story-So-Far
Did you get a chance to hear me on BBC Newcastle Radio on the Anna Foster Show on the 14th of September; I was talking about the Newcastle book and school life experiences with dyslexia, I gained such a huge response!
Please follow the link to hear it again; http://bbc.in/1KTgeFl
This was my first time on the radio and although this was initially scary, Anna Foster was fantastic and made me feel so relaxed. If anybody is connected to local radio stations please call me as I need to promote locally and would love to do this again, thanks.
Finally, if there is any more information I can give about ME PAT Services or the book project Newcastle Old and New – the story so far? Please email me on email@example.com or phone me direct via 07865 923716, naturally I would be more than happy to help..
Ta ta for now,
Have a great day, week and a fab month!!
Yours Mike and Alison McCoy
ME PAT Services Ltd