Trade association NAPIT has called for government and industry to ensure appropriate action is taken to improve electrical safety in the home, following the publication of a Electrical Safety Roundtable (ESR) report.
The report, which analysed enforcement of Part P of the Building Regulations in England, found that on average 72% of local authorities each year had not taken action against Part P non-compliance between 2011 and 2013.
It also suggested that only 2% attempted to prosecute a case under this part of the Building Regulations and that there had only been one successful prosecution during the three-year period surveyed.
Part P is not being enforced as effectively as it could be.
There is little legal or financial deterrence to prevent Part P noncompliance. This may be allowing the dangerous work of rogue traders to go unchecked and could be putting properties and householders at serious risk.
The investigation included a major Freedom of Information request. It surveyed the enforcement practices of all local authorities in England and returned an 87% response rate, making it one of the largest studies of its kind.
Local authorities have formal enforcement powers under the Building Regulations
The report also shows that the Competent Person Scheme operators have a key role to play in influencing positive change.
Its worthwhile considering that building control departments are stuck between a rock and a hard place, with funding cuts combined with no teeth - a lack of effective deterrence powers
The Competent Person Scheme operators lack any legal enforcement powers or the ability to carry out safety checks on work carried out by unregistered contractors.
Industry bodies need to be given appropriate powers and support to enforce Part P effectively.