The sample inspection system recognises that some electrical workers and contractors are quite capable of getting the job done correctly the first time. It also ensures that the responsibility for ensuring that the work is done correctly rests with the electrical contractor and electrician, and not with the network operator.
The sample inspection system also permits inspectors to audit a much wider range of industry work and ensure a safer result overall for the network operator's customers. For example, alterations and additions to domestic premises are a common activity and the electrical work associated with them is considered to offer greater safety problems than those in new dwellings. This system allows the network operator to establish an inspection surveillance in this area of work without increasing its inspection resource. Also, under the sample inspection system, the electrician who tested and checked a new electrical installation should attach an 'Installation Test Certificate' sticker inside the meter enclosure and identify himself or herself on it as well as stating that the electrical installation has been tested and checked.
A notice of completion is received from the electrical contractor which also provides details of the electrician who checked and tested the work. If the electrician's performance is satisfactory and he or she completes a reasonable volume of work within a defined time span, a sample rate (that is, one in five) is assigned to this electrician. Inspections are then carried out when the sample rate (that is, the fifth job) is reached.
The sample rate for new electrical installations is determined by the network operator and is based on a formula which is part of the network operator's approved inspection system plan. The electrician's sample rate is set automatically and continually adjusts depending on the electrician's performance and volume of work.