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About the Electrical Safety Office

As Queensland's electrical safety regulator, the Electrical Safety Office (ESO) seeks to make Queensland industries, homes and communities safe from the risk of electrical harm by focusing on compliance, enforcement, advisory and support services.

The ESO undertakes a wide range of activities to increase  awareness and promote electrical safety within all environments, with the key objective being to reduce the rate of electrical fatalities, injuries, and property damage within Queensland.

Responsibilities and functions of the ESO include:

  • providing advice to the Minister and statutory  bodies, including the Electrical Safety Board and committees set up under the Electrical Safety Act 2002
  • management of registration, licensing, approval  (electrical equipment) and accreditation regimes required under legislation
  • developing and implementing  education and awareness activities to assist industry and the community to reduce  the risk of death and injury from electrocution, fire and explosion
  • promoting  compliance with electrical safety laws and standards across industry and the  community, and enforcing standards when non-compliance is evident through a statewide inspectorate (including audits, incident  investigations and fire investigations where electricity is suspected of being  the cause)
  • influencing and developing legislative framework, subordinate  legislation and standards for electrical safety
  • providing information, training and guidance for industry to reduce risk  and make work electrically safe
  • undertaking pre and post market surveillance schemes of equipment supply  to promote compliance with electrical safety laws and standards
  • engaging with industry and the community to build partnerships  and collaborative efforts to improve electrical safety outcomes.

The focus of the ESO is guided by the  Electrical Safety Plan for Queensland (PDF, 1802.76 KB). This plan is developed and reviewed  periodically by the Electrical Safety Board, which was established  under legislation to give advice and make recommendations to the responsible  Minister about policies, strategies, and legislative arrangements for  electrical safety in Queensland. The Board is chaired by the independent Commissioner for Electrical Safety.

Committing to work closely with the Electrical Safety Board to achieve its goal of eliminating  all preventable electrical deaths in Queensland, the ESO also engages  stakeholders from both industry and the community in a collective effort  towards improving electrical safety. The ESO believes this approach and engagement is pivotal in making significant progress towards an  electrically safe home, community and workplace environment.

The Electrical Safety Plan for Queensland identifies the following three priority areas, and  strategies developed to address them.

Electrical equipment

Information has been developed to assist general businesses and electrical contractors to identify electrically safe commercial and industrial equipment, as well as registration  and certification relating to household electrical appliances, cords, cables  and electrical accessories. This priority includes a focus on the improved design of electrical equipment by influencing safety standards and enforcing compliance to those standards.

Electrical installations

Primarily  focused on fixed wiring and electrical accessories in workplaces and homes, electrical and non-electrical work practices, and unlicensed electrical work.  Additionally, options for expanding the coverage of safety switches will be  explored to improve the safety of electrical installations.


This  area includes the supply industry infrastructure, equipment utilised, and workforce  and work practices, with a particular focus on where people either work too  close to powerlines or accidentally come into contact with them.

With the assistance and commitment of the ESO and its stakeholders, the strategies identified will have a positive effect on the lives of workers, their families and the community.

Organisational structure and roles

As part of the Office of Industrial Relations (OIR), the Electrical Safety Office (ESO) organisational structure has been set up to deliver efficient electrical safety service delivery. The ESO conducts investigations into electrical incidents and complaints regarding installations, equipment or electrical work practices with respect to both workplaces and domestic premises.

ESO and the community

The Electrical Safety Office (ESO) provides information, education and training activities to assist industry employees and the community in reducing the risk of death and injury from electrical incidents.

Reduction in serious electrical incidents

The Electrical Safety Office (ESO) is working to increase awareness of electrical safety and reduce the number of injuries, deaths, and property damage in Queensland through the dissemination of information, education, advertising and industry engagement. Such engagement has seen a significant reduction in electrical fatalities and incidents throughout the community and workplace.

Boards and committees

The Electrical Safety Board provides advice and makes recommendations to the Minister about policy, strategy and legislative arrangements for electrical safety.

Last updated
07 August 2018

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