Christchurch man fined for hiring student electrician

Staff Reporter
Indian Newslink, Auckland, December 9, 2018
The Christchurch District Court fined $2550 for allowing a University student to carryout prescribed electrical work on his property.
It is unlawful to employ any unauthorised person, not properly certified by the authorities to perform any electrical job, since it could become a major fire and health hazard.
The Court heard that the accused, named Tu Nguyen, had employed a student for the job, although he had hired an electrical company to complete electrical work on his property.
Ministry of Business, Immigration and Employment (MBIE) Team Leader Simon Thomas said that Mr Nguyen also carried out prescribed electrical work himself on the property although he was not licensed or registered by the Electrical Workers Registration Board.
Endangering lives
“This is an example of a homeowner taking dangerous shortcuts, which can endanger the lives of anyone in the house, at any time. Simply put, it is unlawful to undertake prescribed electrical work, unless you are licensed to do so – whether it is your house or not,” Mr Thomas said.
The Court was told that Mr Nguyen contracted a company to project-manage proposed developments to the property. The contractor then sub-contracted an electrical company to complete the electrical work on the property.
Power locked out
Mr Thomas said that the electrical company had locked out the power supply over the weekend, but Mr Nguyen and the student entered the property and carried out electrical work themselves.
This included installing data and power sockets, switchboard fuses and LED lights.
“When the electrical company employee returned to the property, he found that the lockout had been removed and the power livened. He also found safety issues with live cables on the property. He then shut off (rightfully) the power supply and refused to continue or certify the work. He returned three days later to find the power has been restored and reported the incident to the authorities,” Mr Thomas said.
Mr Thomas said that the employee did well to report Mr Nguyen.
Ministry Warning
“This type of work, when incorrectly installed, can result in fire or serious harm,” he said.
Mr Nguyen should not have allowed an unlicensed student to undertake dangerous electrical work that should only be carried out by a licensed and registered electrical worker,” he added.
Mr Thomas said that licensed electrical workers are professionals who have the skills and expertise to do the job safely and correctly.
“Where prescribed electrical work is not being carried out by a licensed electrical worker, our team will investigate, ensuring the safety of New Zealanders,” he said.

Only licenced electricians can carry out related works
(Image from NZ Electrical Workers Registration Board Website)

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