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General Chat Thread, PAT Testing/Damaged faceplates in General; Hi Guys, We've just had a PAT test done over the holidays here and the testers have decided to slap ...
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    DrCheese's Avatar
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    PAT Testing/Damaged faceplates

    Hi Guys,
    We've just had a PAT test done over the holidays here and the testers have decided to slap great big "Danger, unsafe appliance" on computers that have damaged faceplates.

    Where do we stand with this? The company that dealt with it previously never failed equipment based on this, so we never saw it as an issue.
    Short of replacing faceplates that will just get damaged or removed again, Where do we stand legally on this? (i.e if we continued to use the kit regardless)

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    joe90bass's Avatar
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    Sounds a bit overzealous of them to me! I don't have an answer to the legal implications, but..Whilst the PAT testers are 'supposedly' the experts what is your view on how dangerous the PCs are? Can you do a risk assessment with whoever is in charge of H&S at your place? Can you make safe with assistance from the D&T dept or site staff?

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    IrritableTech's Avatar
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    The majority of the case is metal, so exposing the metal behind the plastic doesn't seem electrically unsafe. However, that isn't to say it is safe! The metal is often quite sharp behind those plates, but I'd be surprised if this concerned a PAT tester.

    We've never had a computer fail for this reason, but generally try and replace plates when they are broken or removed. If a student sees damage in a room, we often find they are happier to cause more damage.

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    If the equipment did fail the inspection part of the test then no electrical tests would have been carried out on it which probably doesn't leave you in the best position legally. It is useful to have someone in school qualified in PAT so they can retest failed devices like this.
    Last edited by Valentine; 13th April 2012 at 10:10 AM.

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    synaesthesia's Avatar
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    Tell them to retest them properly or they can go and get hanged for their payment. I would go absolutely APE if I saw some jobsworth do that. For instance, under that mindset, tech stations would be an instant fail...
    Last edited by synaesthesia; 13th April 2012 at 12:35 PM.

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    joe90bass's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Valentine View Post
    If the equipment did fail the inspection part of the test then no electrical tests would have been carried out on it which probably doesn't leave you in the best position legally. It is useful to have someone in school qualified in PAT so they can retest failed devices like this.
    Good point, never thought of that.......

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    DrCheese's Avatar
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    Whilst the PAT testers are 'supposedly' the experts what is your view on how dangerous the PCs are?
    Well they are all Dell GX620/745's SFF's so whist yes you could stick your finger in and touch the RAM, You'd really have to cause a lot more damage to harm yourself doing so. If someone wanted to do that, having an intact faceplate wouldn't really do much. I generally consider it cosmetic damage, so it's frustrating that they've slapped failed stickers on them.

    We've tried in the past to fix them in place but the students always find a way to push them out again. In some cases they've snapped the little divider between the two faceplates, meaning we can't just stick them back in, we'd have to replace the entire front.
    We've sorta given up for the moment and will learn from the experience when we next refresh our stock (soon)
    Last edited by DrCheese; 13th April 2012 at 12:24 PM.

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    themightymrp's Avatar
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    The company who used to do our PAT tests failed a load of computers based on missing face plates. Our current company doesn't seem to care though :/ They passed them all!

    The problem we have is that most of our systems are Dell and to get replacement covers are 5 a pop - that would add up to some serious spending over the course of a year to keep them repaired!

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    DrCheese's Avatar
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    How did you resolve it? I'm tempted to just rip the stickers off but ugh, the legalities of it. If they've actually done a test of the unit and it's passed ok I really don't see what's wrong with it.

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    As it has been failed I don't think anyone can recommend using the equipment again until it is retested (whether it is fixed or the testers are just informed it isn't a risk) as certainly the school and possibly yourself could be in serious trouble if something does happen. The testers will have logs of everything that has passed and failed as it is a requirement of the testing.

    To be qualified for PAT it takes no knowledge or experience of anything electronic which doesn't always mean the people doing it can use common sense as they just might not know enough about it. I would hope a PAT company has some sort of qualified electricians doing it though.

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    Iv had this before, i think the argument is the students possibly put there hands into the machine, made some new plates on the laser cutting machines - worked nicely.

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    synaesthesia's Avatar
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    There is no argument. You can have PC's without lids, like you can have cars without bonnets. The PAT testing company needs to come out and retest them at no extra expense.

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    Ask them why they failed them?

    If the gaps allowed access to energised mains voltage equipment then fair enough.

    Ben

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    I've had a lot of that in the past, all I did was get the dt tech to cut out some lovely green plastic covers for the missing sections and then me and the other technicains super glued them on.

    Who do you think is more to blame the students or the teachers that "don't see it" when they are in those rooms?

    My boss riase this with the head of IT and the head explianing that if it continued that there won't be many lessons that will be using computers, it soon stopped.
    Last edited by Grey-gear; 13th April 2012 at 01:50 PM.

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    bmdixon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by themightymrp View Post
    The problem we have is that most of our systems are Dell and to get replacement covers are 5 a pop - that would add up to some serious spending over the course of a year to keep them repaired!
    stick old cd drives (or get new @ the cheapest you can in bulk, would save money over time) in them (and don't connect them up). Problem solved!

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