The Board found Daryn Noel Leaity, an Electrical Inspector of Auckland, guilty of disciplinary offences under section 143(a)(i) and 143(f) of the Electricity Act 1992 and fined him $2,500 and ordered him to pay costs of $1,000. The Board also ordered that the matter be published.
The prescribed electrical work (PEW) undertaken involved the install of a solar photovoltaic system. The install of such systems is “high risk” PEW under regulation 6A of the Electrical (Safety) Regulations 2010. The work was carried out in a non-compliant and unsafe manner. In particular, Mr Leaity installed a supporting framework that was not correctly bonded to earth, installed flexible conduit with solar photovoltaic array cabling through a building with no marking to indicate it contained solar photovoltaic array cabling. He installed 230 volt cabling from an inverter to the main switchboard in a manner which exposed the cabling to potential damage. Mr Leaity was also found to have provided a false or misleading return when he provided safety certification for the PEW.
The Board, in its decision, noted that the Respondent avoided the issues he had created when they were brought to his attention and that, whilst not part of the charges, he did not ensure the connections of the solar photovoltaic system to the distribution network was carried out correctly. The Board saw these factors as aggravating features and the penalty was increased because of them.
The Board reminds electrical workers that it is a “solar photovoltaic system” that is high risk PEW, not just the connections to the mains. As such, it is important that inspections are carried out of the entire solar photovoltaic system to ensure it is electrically safe.
It is also important that electrical workers deal with electrical safety issues in a timely manner when they are brought to their attention. A failure to do so may lead to disciplinary action or, more seriously, to the harm of persons or the loss of property.