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Electrical socket covers – danger!!

In certain circumstances, the use of plastic 13A electrical socket inserts (sold as safety accessories), can overcome the safety features designed into socket outlets.

THE TECH STUFF: It is a requirement of the IET Wiring Regulations – BS7671:2008 (2015), that socket outlets have shutters and preferably be of a type complying with BS1363. Electrical sockets that are manufactured to BS1363 (13A wall socket-outlets, multi way adaptors and flexible extensions) must have an interlocking shutter mechanism to stop the insertion of foreign material into the socket tubes. The BS1363 standard also sets a distance which a plug pin has to be inserted before coming in contact with live parts.

Socket covers are not constructed to any electrical or other safety standard. The pins on the socket covers may be larger than the socket tubes which can cause damage to the socket and defeat the safety design of BS 1363.

WARNING: In certain circumstances the insertion of socket covers, or their breakage whilst in use, can allow foreign objects to be inserted directly onto live parts within the socket, thus presenting a high risk of electric shock.

ACTION: Check out the website and any socket inserts currently in use should be withdrawn and responsibly disposed of.

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