05 Oct 2017
Prysmian Group, the largest manufacturer of electrical cable in the UK and part of the largest global cable manufacturer, has been campaigning for many years to make the manufacturing and importing of substandard electrical cable into the UK illegal.
“Properly manufactured and tested electrical cable is very safe”, says Llyr Roberts, CEO of Prysmian in the UK, “but cable that is substandard or is being used in the wrong situation is a real hazard that can electrocute and cause fires.”
Industry estimates that 20% of all the cable in the UK is substandard, non-approved or counterfeit (Figures from the Approved Cable Initiative) and that some 4,000 fires in buildings each year are down to faulty electrics (From Home Office Fire Statistics for 2015/2016).
“As a responsible manufacturer, Prysmian ensures that all of its products conform to the most rigorous quality standards and we are appalled that substandard and dangerous cable is still allowed into the UK market.
“For many years we have been calling for appropriate legislation to prevent substandard cable – typically manufactured abroad – being brought into the UK supply chain. We support the British Approvals Service for Cables (BASEC) and actively promote the Approved Cables Initiative (ACI), both of which have been established and supported by the cable industry to try and stop dangerous cable getting into UK homes.”
The new European Construction Product Regulation (CPR), which came into effect in July 2017, is a step in the right direction. CPR makes it a legal requirement for cable sold in the UK to carry documentary evidence from the manufacturer identifying exactly which standards it conforms to - but even this regulation does not apply to all types of cable.
There is a clear need for straightforward legislation that makes it illegal to import, sell or install cable that is not manufactured and tested to approved and declared BASEC quality standards.