As a Strata Manager you often walk into a unit’s electrical meter room and that sick feeling hits. There are old surfboards, bikes, spare bins and gardening equipment. Even more frightening is the old ceramic fuses still operating. When discussing the safety of a building and the electrical meter room, all to often the body corporate want to shy away from spending money and upgrading this area of the building. ‘Why bother, we have never had an electrical issue yet’ is a standard response.
In short I will outline three major reasons why you need to upgrade that switchboard now;
- SAFETY TO ALL RESIDENTS. Changing from a ceramic fuse to a combination circuit breaker for each unit offers you the correct protection for both the ageing wires in your roof and wall cavities and, the risk of electric shock through faulty appliances or accidents. The upgrade will protect the lives of all residents.
- LIABILITY. If you are an owner, or a strata committee member and you have been asked in a formal meeting or discussed the concept of upgrading the switchboard and decided to ignore the issue, you could possibly be held liable should an unsafe incident occur. Start a plan of action, start collecting a quote or two and make a plan for a future upgrade. Show you are working towards fixing the switchboard.
- ELECTRICITY OVERLOAD. Nowadays we have air conditioning systems, a plasma/ LCD tv or two, double power points, an array of down lights, all placing pressure and overloading those old style ceramic fuses and increasing the chance of fire and electric shock. You need to make sure each unit can carry the load of all our modern day appliances.
So when reviewing your capital works and considering what next you are going to work on within the strata plan, dare to take a look into that meter room…
For more useful information regarding Strata Management head to Strata Revolution’s website.
Michelle Russell – Managing Director
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