Health & Safety Executive GS38 guidance note is aimed at people who use electrical test equipment on low voltage circuits. Institution (BSI) guidance and Health and Safety Executive (HSE) guidance Regulations lists HSE Guidance Note GS38 – Electrical test equipment. This is a free-to-download, web-friendly version of GS38 (First edition, published ). This version has been adapted for online use from HSE’s current printed.

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The fourth edition of GS38 makes two important points regarding the purchase of new equipment and the use of older equipment. Related products Electrical safety and you: This section has some in-depth points regarding correct equipment selection.

Electrical test equipment for use on low voltage electrical systems

Risky business Vehicle safety on farms Kidsafe: There are particular requirements for the use of non-contact devices in coalmines.

As a gs338 rule, GS38 states that any equipment or test leads that conform to BS EN or BS EN will meet the requirements and be compliant, provided you have taken gs3 consideration the installation category. Trusted by Professionals Search: While it she fundamentally remained the same as the previous version, there are some key additions that could affect the way you test, or the equipment you are using.

Other changes include the use of proving units, non-contact voltage detectors and installation category ratings. Specific requirements for test leads In line with changes made to the standards that cover the manufacture of test leads, there are some specific requirements that leads should comply with added in the fourth edition: Updates regarding the causes of accidents This section has been expanded on to include additional hsw that have been raised since the previous publication: When it comes to proving dead this has always been advised against by Electrical Safety First previously the Electrical Safety Yse.


This document provides advice and guidance on how to achieve this. Clarification of the different installation categories BS EN CAT ratings is included in the guidance note as a reference and a visual guide is available to download at the end of this article. Safe working practices Memorandum of guidance on the Electricity at Work Regulation.

If you find you have leads or test equipment that no longer meet these requirements, or have been damaged, it would be advisable to replace them to ensure your ongoing safety. Setting the multimeter to the wrong voltage range will lead to a false reading, but having it set to measure current or resistance can result in excessive current being drawn through the test probes, leads and multimeter.

This has changed in the fourth edition, emphasising the importance of using test leads and test equipment that is suitable for the category of the installation.

Two key points have been added to the examples of common problems to look for: A – switch to normal size A – switch to large size A – switch to larger size. For multimeters, fused leads should have a high-breaking capacity fuse hbc or hrc with a current rating that usually should not exceed mA.

Electrical test equipment for use on low voltage electrical systems

This standard, which came into full effect in Mayis the standard that all new two pole voltage indicators should comply with. Electrical test equipment for use on low voltage electrical systems Date of publication: This has a new paragraph added regarding the use of non-contact detectors, or volt sticks: This website uses non-intrusive cookies to improve your user experience. However, if those leads are not rated to the same category as your installation, you could be putting yourself at risk.

These regular references to CAT safety ratings in the fourth edition of GS38 highlight the importance of ensuring that you have the right equipment and test leads for the job.


This is an important safety issue as using equipment that is not correctly rated for the installation category can and has resulted in serious injury and death. GS38 Fourth edition Download a free copy. However, non-contact or proximity devices can be useful gss38 indicating if something is live, eg when attempting to remove a single cable installed in trunking containing many single cables.

Only devices which make contact with the conductor ie not proximity devices should be used for proving dead. See also Electrical safety at work Safe maintenance Risk management The health and safety toolbox – how to control risks at work.

A newly added paragraph touches on the importance or carrying out risk assessments, putting into place relevant safety measures and the use of appropriate PPE. Whenever there are changes made to legislation and best practice, questions are often raised regarding existing equipment and whether it can still be used. When it comes to buying gz38 voltage detectors, you can be sure compliance with GS38 if the unit you are buying complies to BS EN Provided your existing equipment or leads meet either of the above there should be no need to replace anything until they need it.

There are several points highlighted here that hsse be considered closely when it comes to test equipment selection.

hse guidance note gs38

This includes electrical testing where dead tests are often as effective as live measurements. A final change regarding test leads relates to the use of fused leads.

This fourth edition includes current test equipment and references and links to further guidance have been updated.