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Thread: COC with errors

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Isetech View Post
    ECA is there to advise and protect the electrical contractor, they are NOT the elctrical industry watchdog. they are there to give customers a false sense on safety, as we are experiencing on a site in Umhlanga. I have reported a member to the ECA and sent them the document (COC), I was told they would sort it out. I am waiting for the customer to return, we are then going to setup a meeting with the customer, the landlord and the AIA and the DOL to start an investigation. the ECA are welcome to join us. We are going to use the old COC sent to the ECA for the meeting as the contractor has still not issued a legal COC.

    Lets clear this up, the ECA and ECB or any other House/hand of safety are "NOT" the industry watchdogs. Everyone wants a piece of the pie.

    The DOL department of labour is responsible(the watchdog) for electrical industry (from what I understand, last I checked) Please feel free to correct me.

    Some other good news for customers, I had a long chat to an assessor a couple weeks back, it seems the rules have changed, that dodgy COC you were issued cannot be held against you if your property is damaged. So there is no longer a need to panic if you find out your COC is not worth the paper it is printed on. When I asked who checks the COC id filled out correctly or if they do random site checks, I was told it is just a box they tick, nobody checks anything, so long as there is a piece of paper that states COC, you all good.
    I don't agree with your last paragraph. The policing of coc "should be done by DOL" but like every government department in this country it is not happening unless there where loss of life due to illegal electrical connections and even that is becoming a grey area. Look at stats in SA about fatalities compared to 15 years ago. As far as i am aware the owner of the property is responsible for SAFE electrical installations the main purpose for a valid COC is firstly all about user safety and then property damage. Your insurance will be your next headace if your property should be destroyed by fire due to faulty wiring or inadequate switchgear.

    Responsibility for electrical installations!!!!

    (1) Subject to subregulation (3), the user or lessor of an electrical installation, as the case may be, shall be responsible for the safety, safe use and maintenance of the electrical installation he or she uses or leases.
    Certificate of compliance

    (1) Subject to the provisions of subregulation (3), every user or lessor of an electrical installation, as the case may be, shall have a valid certificate of compliance for that installation in the form of Annexure 1, which shall be accompanied by a test report in the format approved by the chief inspector, in respect of every such electrical installation
    Or am I missing something here?

  2. #12
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    This whole CoC thing needs a revamp and or policing.

    How i was tought to do a CoC is different to how I was on the Unit Standards course...

    I do think we need a standardised actual course... like maths subject in school, on how to do a CoC and also for P1 and P2, where by a course outline is done that everyone follows.

    This P1 and P2 can be self study which opens people up to parrot fashion learning and not actual understanding.

    Bascially a 3 month course like an N level to be done and actual course work and outcomes.

    That was a lot more standardisation can occur.

    Heck in the UK thats how they do it with books and subjects and exams and colleges etc. 2391-52 is their inspection and testing which is bascially CoC and we need to follow that approach in my humble opinion.

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  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alfred M View Post
    I don't agree with your last paragraph. The policing of coc "should be done by DOL" but like every government department in this country it is not happening unless there where loss of life due to illegal electrical connections and even that is becoming a grey area. Look at stats in SA about fatalities compared to 15 years ago. As far as i am aware the owner of the property is responsible for SAFE electrical installations the main purpose for a valid COC is firstly all about user safety and then property damage. Your insurance will be your next headace if your property should be destroyed by fire due to faulty wiring or inadequate switchgear.

    Responsibility for electrical installations!!!!

    (1) Subject to subregulation (3), the user or lessor of an electrical installation, as the case may be, shall be responsible for the safety, safe use and maintenance of the electrical installation he or she uses or leases.
    Certificate of compliance

    (1) Subject to the provisions of subregulation (3), every user or lessor of an electrical installation, as the case may be, shall have a valid certificate of compliance for that installation in the form of Annexure 1, which shall be accompanied by a test report in the format approved by the chief inspector, in respect of every such electrical installation
    Or am I missing something here?
    I was referring to insurance claims only, for example a COC I received a week ago, the entire building is burnt to the ground. When I informed the assessor that the COC was not filled out correctly, it had 6 errors, which were crossed out and changed and missing information, making the document invalid. I was told that even though the document was worthless it wouldn't affect the claim. It gets complicated so I am not going to go into details. So this is good news for all those people out there with invalid COC's.

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Isetech View Post
    I was referring to insurance claims only, for example a COC I received a week ago, the entire building is burnt to the ground. When I informed the assessor that the COC was not filled out correctly, it had 6 errors, which were crossed out and changed and missing information, making the document invalid. I was told that even though the document was worthless it wouldn't affect the claim. It gets complicated so I am not going to go into details. So this is good news for all those people out there with invalid COC's.
    Maybe the coc was filled in the incorrect way cause that is how they thought/ assume it should be done .The installation is either safe or not and a piece of paper wont change that.
    I mean how do you know that everything you fill in is correct if the coc format changes(look at bonding test) and nobody tells you until one day down the line their is a issue.That is just the certficate.There is alot of own interpretation/understanding of a big almost 900 pages long and says things like unless in this case and refer to another sans code which you dont have access to.Even the AIA interpretation of things can be different among their inspectors.

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  6. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Firepool View Post
    Maybe the coc was filled in the incorrect way cause that is how they thought/ assume it should be done .The installation is either safe or not and a piece of paper wont change that.
    I mean how do you know that everything you fill in is correct if the coc format changes(look at bonding test) and nobody tells you until one day down the line their is a issue.That is just the certficate.There is alot of own interpretation/understanding of a big almost 900 pages long and says things like unless in this case and refer to another sans code which you dont have access to.Even the AIA interpretation of things can be different among their inspectors.
    Maybe the industry should sort out all the issue before they make it compulsory to the public, considering the only people loosing are the very people who are suppose to be protected.

  7. #16
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    A lot needs to be done but I don't see it ever happening sadly.

    I would love it for actual course work for CoC with proper modules and teaching criteria so every spark is at least on the same page and level footing with no interpretation needed.

    A baseline ,if you will, needs to be created.



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  8. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Isetech View Post
    What blows my mind is the fact that we live in a digital world yet we still issue hand scribbled COC's full of errors (much like my posts )
    There is a digital version for ECA members. Great if you do, say, a block of flats where you need a test report for every flat DB. Also, and i think all coc's should be, its stored online. Once you complete the coc, you can check if you missed anything or made errors (print a water marked sample or scroll through on screen) before you lock it (then you can't change it) and issue it. They should all be like that - stored on line - no lost bits of paper if something goes wrong.

    Also customer can be sent the water marked version that doesn't have you signature on it to show its been done - get your payment before you unlock and issue to a customer.

    This would stop yellow bits of paper being passed to people who shouldn't have them. Dodgey guys selling blank coc's to there mates.
    Its not like anyone tracks the numbers on top of the yellow paper coc's is it. If its online - its your account, you are accountable.

    So, yes, it should all be online. If you have guys saying can't afford a lap top or tablet to do this - well what kind of company are they running - probably can't afford proper testing gear.

    If people do coc's properly then there should be no objection to there being a permanent saved copy.

  9. #18
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    Another thing is the way testing is taught. In the uk its a seperate couse (and a whole seperate job), 5 days when i did it. It is not easy and it is very strict. If you do anything in the practical wrong - fail.
    Its like a driving test. The written paper is very involved

    Here, when i did the unit standards, i was sat in a room with people who looked like they didn't know why they were even told to go there. Not one had a clue what they were doing (i mean really no idea), about what they were testing for and why a test was done.
    You pay a couple of grand and you got your unit standards.

    The 'do portfolio of tests you have done along side a licensed electrician" method is joke. Could not for the life of me find anyone who actually tested, let alone let me "work along side them" to do a portfolio. Besides those "portfolio's" were stacked 10 high and i don't know how deep at the ECA when i went to try and sort mine out.

    Also they way you are taught to test. In the units standards course i was told to Test earth continuity of a circuit with a wander lead? And that was the only method - Seriously? If you are in a, for example 20000 square meter ware house, please don't tell me going around with a long wonder lead to test earth continuity is the way to go. The UK tests R1+R2. Link live and earth at one end and test at the other.

    12 years ago it was hard to find a place to do unit standards for testing. Now i have places pop up on my facebook everyday. Pay, pass and off you go. Hardest part of the procedure is getting the 6 grand to do it.

  10. #19
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    That's why the online process would be the best route, there will be record of the COC for anyone working on the property.

    For example, I am working on a project up North, I should be able to type in the address or GPS coordinates, log into the COC data base and view any Test reports, COC's or supplementary COC's issued for the property in the past 5 years. If there is no record of a COC, then the customer would be advised and a test report would be required for the property within 6 months, or by the time my project is complete.

    You would have access to the COC data based on your skill level, for example, a single phase tester would have access to level 1, an installation electrician would have access to level 2 and so forth. So if I have an issue on site, for example the one up north, I could link a refence number and anyone with level 2 access would be able to view the issues I am experiencing with the contractor/inspector.

    This way the DOL could either send their staff for training so that they have people who a suitably skilled and experienced to carry out random checks on COC's, OR they could contract suitably trained inspectors to do random checks.

    Then most important, 3 strikes and you are suspended for 6 months, strike 4 your license should should be suspended and you should have to start the whole application again from the start.

    It would resolve the issue with inspectors being being bullied by companies to produce X amount of COC's per day, customers with the " I dont have funds to fix my property" and other issues we face on a daily basis.

    The only reason the industry is so messed up, we all know that its a numbers game and the chance that you will get caught is so unlikely that it is worth taking a chance.





    This could become a reality, it is just putting the right person in the position.
    Last edited by Isetech; 13-May-22 at 02:51 PM.

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  12. #20
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    I agree my wife is a Biochemists at a pharmaceutical company and she issues 10 to 15 COA's per day (certificate of analysis) and it is digitised using SAP anyone with correct clearance can access the certificate of analysis and test methods used anywhere in SA. There is no room for error as the parameters is set for specific test so any error on coa is flagged by the system. Surely COC also being a legal and important document can follow this route but sadly in the electrical industry it is seemingly not as important. The complete approach, effectiveness and legality needs a complete overhaul in the electrical industry

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