FAQ

What is the purpose of the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment?

The ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment was introduced as a method of assessing the current knowledge of individuals working in the electrotechnical industry across a wide range of relevant health and safety topics. Such knowledge and awareness will help ensure their health and safety, and that of others who work with or near them on sites.

Is the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment applicable to anyone applying for an ECS card?

No, new rules came into effect in January 2021; as a result of changes to the following cards - Labourer, ECS Related Discipline, Senior Manager, Site Manager, Contract Manager, Office Staff and Visitors. These cards will be honoured until the expiry date.

Individuals who have held these cards in the past may now apply for the new Electrical Labourer, Operative, ECS Related Discipline, ECS Manager or ECS Site Support card. 

The health and safety requirement for the new cards has changed. The ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment will not be accepted as part of an initial application for the new cards. 

Individuals should refer to the new Initial Application forms to see the new health and safety requirements for each card.

Why do individuals have to do the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment?

Successful completion of the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment became mandatory for all SJIB Grade (ECS) card applications at all levels on the 1st February 2003.

Anyone applying for an SJIB Grade (ECS) Cards must have either:

successfully completed the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment; or

provided suitable evidence (e.g. a copy of a certificate) of holding an exemption (within the validity period) which is recognised by the SJIB and the JIB.

Is anyone exempt from having to complete the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment?

Apprentices and Adult Trainees are exempt from completing the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment as they cover all aspects health and safety in detail throughout the apprenticeship.

Newly qualified Electricians are exempt from having to complete the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment for 3 years. 

Newly qualified Electricians who have completed the Crediting Electrotechnical Competence Scheme (CEC) are exempt from completing the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment for 3 years.

What would happen if an individual applied for an SJIB Grade (ECS) Card who hasn’t completed the appropriate health and safety training ?

On receipt of the application the SJIB would write to the individual advising them to complete the appropriate training or ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment or one of the approved equivalents. Their application will be held on file for 12 months.

Where can the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment be taken?

The majority of the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessments are organised by individual companies. 

The SJIB facilitate and invigilate the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment on behalf of individuals who are working with through a Recruitment Agency, are self-employed or un-employed. 

Unite the Union facilitate and invigilate the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment on behalf of union members. The Union holds the assessments in their offices in Aberdeen, Dundee and Glasgow. 

How much does the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment cost?

SJIB Member Companies, SELECT Member Companies and Members of Unite the Union - £30.00 per Assessment.

Non-Member Companies and Self Employed or Un-Employed Operatives - £48.00 per Assessment.

Who pays for the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment?

The Employer will arrange payment for the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment. In the event an individual fails the Employer will arrange and pay for the re-sit. If an individual were to fail the re-sit they will be responsible for the payment of the next re-sit not the Employer.

What is the format of the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment?

It is a multiple-choice paper based Assessment. 

An Invigilator is appointed by the Company to facilitate the assessment process and they are responsible for maintaining the integrity of the Assessment.

Each Assessment is unique to the individual. 

What types of questions are asked during the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment?

During the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment individuals are required to answer a total of 50 questions. These questions focus on the following areas:-

Set

Number

General Health and Safety

6

Manual Handling Operations

4

Reporting Accidents

3

Personal Protective Equipment at Work

4

Health and Hygiene

3

Fire and Emergency

9

Work at Height

5

Work Equipment

4

Special Site Hazards

3

Electrotechnical

6

Environmental

3

Total

50

What preparation is available?

All the questions can be accessed from this website and anyone about to complete the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment should familiarise themselves with the questions and answers. Alternatively, individuals can go to the Publications section of www.sjib.org.uk and purchase the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Question and Answer booklet.

What training is available?

SELECT run The Electrotechnical Site Safety Assessment (TESSA) course throughout the year. Information on dates can be found on www.select.org.uk.

How much time are individuals given to complete the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment?

30 minutes.

What is the pass mark?

To successfully pass the assessment, 43 out of 50 questions must be answered correctly.

How long will it take to get the result?

All ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessments will be marked and companies notified of the outcome within 2 weeks.

What happens if an individual fails the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment?

Any individual who fails the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment can re-sit the Assessment again at any time; there is no time limit.

How long is the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Certificate valid for?

The ECS Health, Safety and Environmental certificate is valid for 3 years, i.e. the lifetime of the card. A current certificate must have at least six months left on it in order for an individual to obtain a card.

Where can the current List of Approved Equivalent Exemptions be found?

The SJIB and the JIB maintain a list of recognised exemptions which is reviewed annually by the ECS Steering Committee and can be viewed at www.sjib.org.uk.

An ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment or any approved exemption will only be accepted for one card application.

Why do exemptions have a validity period?

Health and safety legislation and guidance changes as a result of changes in technology and improvements in health and safety practices. In addition, an individual’s knowledge may fade unless refresher training is undertaken from time to time.

The ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment seeks to test current health and safety knowledge, therefore awareness needs to be assessed periodically.

It is for these same reasons that exemptions are also assigned a validity period.

Who can apply for a course or qualification to be added on to the List of Approved Equivalent Exemptions?

Only Scheme and Training Providers can apply for a course or qualification to be included on the List of Approved Equivalent Exemptions. They must ensure that they refer to the Guidance for Scheme and Training Providers on Criteria for Approval of an Exemption from the ECS Health, Safety and Environmental Assessment when they prepare their request.

A copy of the Guidance is available on the ECS Health and Safety Section of www.sjib.org.uk.