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MP calls for regular electrical safety checks in the Private Rented Sector

More should be done to protect tenants living in private rented accommodation when it comes to electrical safety.

This is the view expressed by Eastleigh MP, Mike Thornton. Mr Thornton is calling for changes in the law in order to demand that landlords provide electrical safety certificates in future.

At the moment landlords are required to provide certificates for gas checks, but not for electricity circuits. In fact, unless a property is registered as a House of Multiple Occupation, landlords don't even have to show when the property's electrics were last tested.

Mr Thornton explained his position: "With more and more people now renting their homes, it's more important than ever that tenants can live safe in the knowledge that the electrics in their home have been tested and certified. The Government must realise that the current laws are just not up to scratch.

"Electrical safety certificates should be mandatory in the same way Gas Safety Certificates are. Poor electrics in the home can lead to preventable tragedies, with many tenants unaware of any problem until it is too late."

His view has been supported by Phil Buckle, director general of the Electrical Safety Council. Mr Buckle observed that electricity is behind half of all fires in homes in the country, with research suggesting that private tenants may be at a higher risk than others.

Mr Thornton is to make the demands during a Westminster Hall debate in Parliament, potentially leading to a change in legal requirements for landlords.