Electrical testing and tagging

I don’t know about the rest of the world but here in the Great Southern Land it is required for many larger companies to have all electrical equipment used onsite tested for… something… and tagged. Of course this means we have drones bleating at us to get into the server room. (“Nuh uh.”… “No way.”… “I said bugger off.”)

Yesterday as I came in I was collared by the receptionist who said in hushed tones: “The $testing_company guy is in the boardroom - he wanted to get into the side cabinet [which contains a newly-installed and very complex AV system]. I told him to wait while I found someone from IT to sanction it, but he’s in there now.”

Oh goody gumdrops.

So I go into the room and sure enough he’s unplugged most of the stuff in the cabinet. After a dressing-down from me (in front of the bemused group of people having a meeting in the room), I let him finish testing with a parting shot along the lines of “You’d better hope and pray that all that equipment comes back up properly”.

Well… it didn’t. The laptop wasn’t displaying both screens on the TVs, and there was no sound at all.

So at the behest of my boss, for the next two hours I stood over him while he dicked around behind the AV rack, and didn’t get anywhere. About 45 minutes in he had to show another newly-spawned drone where he was working, so in the time that he was out of the room I discovered loose connection, and hey presto the laptop displays properly again.

The sound was a different story though - after a further hour he resorted to calling the installer, and didn’t get very far, so he fled the scene. I called the same guy, identified myself and together we had the sound working within 10 minutes. (Apparently there was a converter box that needed a reboot due to there being no HDMI signal at the time it was powered up originally.)

All this while we have 2 teams of auditors roaming the halls, plus a number of communications sessions (which require IT standby support), PLUS all the other stuff we do on a daily basis.

TL;DR: moufassa goes ape at a contractor, and watches him squirm for 2 hours.

Wouldn’t it be nice if you could bill the contractor for lost time? If not, maybe a beat down in the parking lot out back.

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I’ve got to wonder how stupid you need to be to unplug stuff without knowing what it does and (more importantly) exactly how to get it back up and running again.

I really hope you complained about this jerk. If he was told specifically to wait for someone to sanction his work then I’d say there is good cause for damages there. If you can bill his company for your time, make sure you pad it a bit :smile:

i’m confused… what exactly in your AV box counts as “electrical equipment”? (Or your server room, for that matter?)

Surely you jest!

Anything and everything that is plugged into a mains socket is considered “electrical equipment” for insurance purposes. Thus, everything in the server room that isn’t furniture/racking, and almost everything in the AV cupboard.

@MikeP - I did complain, and loudly. The worst thing about this scenario was the dude’s attitude - he was unsmiling and militant in his dealings with everyone (that I saw), and staunchly unapologetic even when he realised the extent of the damage, especially when he should not have been in the room at all.

Unhappily we didn’t get to bill the company.

Not at all. In my own experience, “electrical equipment” generally refers to equipment that deals with the electrical distribution system, so junction boxes, distribution panels, fuse boxes, etc. Servers, routers, switches, muxers, speakers, projectors, the occasional user, etc don’t count. That’s just my own experience though, which is why I asked.

Someone somewhere has confused “electrical” with “electronic”. They should probably be beaten severely with a wet trout.

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Fair enough. My apologies if I sounded snarky!

I suppose I’m just used to it now - there are so many ridiculous regulations down here these days that sometimes one just has to shake one’s head and chuckle, otherwise said head will asplode!

I agree wholeheartedly.

For people like this, you need a battery operated siren that activates when it is unplugged from the wall, and only reset-able by your own magic karma. Be sure to make this the MOST visible (different color?) power cord you can find, and make sure it is way out in front.

If this “inspector” does his work in an in-use conference room (I won’t bother you a bit!), it will have the desired effect.

Such fun!!

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