On 29 March 2021, Queensland’s Electricity Safety Office was granted an injunction in the Southport Magistrates’ Court preventing Mr Michael Kelly from doing further electrical contracting and electrical work in Queensland. The Court action followed an investigation by the Electrical Safety Office where it was alleged that Mr. Kelly contracted for and performed electrical work without appropriate licences between 21 March and 19 October 2019. Mr. Kelly is alleged to have used AirTasker to advertise the relevant services.
The complaint and summons was issued by Queensland’s independent Work Health and Safety Prosecutor in relation to seven alleged contraventions of the Electrical Safety Act 2002. Mr. Kelly was served with the complaint and summons on 9 March 2021.
The alleged contraventions included Sections 30/40C, 55, and 56 of the Electrical Safety Act 2002.
According to Workplace Health and Safety Queensland, Mr. Kelly had previously ignored directions in the improvement notices that were issued to him requiring him not to perform electrical work or electrical contracting without an appropriate licence.
Pursuant to Section 55 of the Act, a person must not perform or supervise electrical work unless the person is a holder of an electrical work licence and the licence authorises the person to perform the work. Only an individual may be the holder of an electrical work licence. Exceptions to the requirement to hold an electrical work licence are set out in Section 55 (3) including where a person is performing or supervising electrical work for the purposes of installing or repairing telecommunications cabling.
Pursuant to Section 56 of the Act an electrical contractor licence is required where a person proposes to conduct a business or undertaking that includes the performance of electrical work. A person conducts a business or undertaking that includes the performance of electrical work if the person advertises, notifies, or makes a statement to the effect that the person carries on the business of performing electrical work, or if the person contracts for the performance of electrical work other than under a contract of employment, or if the person represents to the public that the person is willing to perform electrical work, or if the person employs a worker to perform electrical work other than for that person.
This compliance and enforcement action serves as a reminder to all individuals and businesses who are advertising or performing electrical works to ensure that they hold required electrical work licences and electrical contractor licences.