News & Views

9th December 2019

Residents urged to be vigilant for unlicensed tradespeople during storm clean-up

02 Dec 2019

Victims of last week’s Sydney’s storms should be vigilant during the clean-up and should feel free to ask any tradesperson for their licence details the National Electrical and Communications Association (NECA) said today.

The warning comes as power is restored to many Sydney residents who were left without it following last week’s storm, which devastated the city.  Many people’s homes may continue to be at risk of electrical faults and Suresh Manickam, CEO of the National Electrical and Communications Association, said residents must satisfy themselves that they are engaging a licensed electrician to do any electrical work.

“Catastrophic weather events tend to bring out the best and worst in people. Often in the wake of such events emergency people and tradespeople going above and beyond. Sadly, we also receive reports of unscrupulous and unlicensed tradespersons attempting to take advantage of those most in need.”

“If you suspect any electrical damage to your property or electrical equipment, do not attempt to do any repair work or switch on power.  Working with electricity is highly dangerous, particularly when wiring or equipment is damaged.  You must get in touch with a licensed electrician and make sure you ask to see their license before they do any work.”

As well as being extremely dangerous, doing electrical work without a license is illegal in NSW and can make residents’ property uninsurable.

Mr Manickam also took the opportunity to praise licensed electricians and the electricity networks for getting power back to people after the catastrophic storm.

“Last week’s storm was an unprecedented freak weather event and I’ve seen first-hand the massive damage that it caused.  I want to thank Ausgrid and the associated electricity networks as well as all the electricians who have been working with them around the clock to get power back to residents in Sydney.  This has involved overcoming considerable electrical engineering challenges across different suburbs, including rebuilding local grids in some areas – approximately 100 power poles required rebuilding or replacing under very challenging circumstances.”

To check a tradesperson’s or contractor’s license, it is recommended that individuals consult the public register here. If you believe completed work may be faulty or hazardous please the visit fair trading website or contact NSW Fair Trading on 13 32 20.

 

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