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ME PAT Newsletter - April 2014

  • Posted on: 10 April 2014
  • By: Mike

Hi folks

Welcome to the April edition of our newsletter highlighting electrician safety in the office, pub, club, factory, homes, leased or rented property, in fact just about everywhere where you have employees and/or customers.... and hopefully we can offer a little bit more too?

Well the winters over [apart from some cold winds out there], and boy it has been a thankfully brief winter… Now along with the clocks going back – or is it forward? I get confused, the main thing is that the mornings are lighter/brighter, the days are getting longer and it also means we are all feeling much better in ourselves, we are more optimistic; we have more energies, more enthusiastic at work and at home and we are all fired up for the year ahead…

Both Alison and myself feel this way too but also for many other reasons as we go through a merger of two businesses. For ten years now I have had a business called “McCoy Energy” [many of my longer term networking buddies will know this] which has been a platform for the marketing of commercial fuel cards from the likes of Shell, BP, Total and many, many more. We have also been involved in commercial and sometime domestic utilities, gas, electric and landlines. Well since 2009 when we formed ME PAT Services Ltd to promote Portable Appliance Testing, we have found that year by year the importance of Electrical Compliance safety has gained more ground and has received recognition from insurance brokers, local housing authorities, letting agents, fire brigades and so on so that we have become busier as we grow the business. So common sense and accountants recommendation has prevailed to combine the resources of the two businesses – we will still do commercial fuel cards directly and generally advise on utilities [we have quite a lot of associates in this area] but under ME PAT Services Ltd. So April 2014 will be remembered in years to come as a bitter sweet month whereby I finally let go of McCoy Energy which has served me [and others] well over the years but move forward as one under ME PAT.
A brave new world indeed….

Moving on, each month I like to include a personal local story of my own, a special contract, a special tale to tell, an experience and so on. Well for this month’s newsletter I have included a testimonial – which is certainly the best reward of a job well done, don’t you think?

As the vast majority of our work comes via networking and recommendation [well over 90%], it always puts a smile on my face when someone tracks us down for the “right reasons” as needing our unique Portable Appliance Testing services especially if they have been told to contact us…  

We received an email totally out of the blue from a company called Foundation Futures based in Newcastle which is a not for profit organization who work with disadvantaged and disengaged young people. Realising they needed to conform quickly to the requirements of the Business Centre they were based in but also having limited funds they contacted ourselves under recommendation. As we are a family based business which allows us to be flexible we were able to incorporate their needs on the way back from back from another contract. Alison popped in, carried out the electrical compliance tests, cracked the usual line of daft gags and left. Nothing unusual or out of the ordinary there – but this is what Sue Davidson emailed back to us:

Hi Mike

“We were recommended ME PAT by a colleague and have been delighted by the service they offered. They were quick to respond, approachable and professional, friendly and efficient. For a fledgling social enterprise that’s beginning to get to grips with the demands of running a business we couldn't recommend them highly enough. We won’t be looking anywhere else for our PAT testing needs. Thank you so much.”
Thanks again

Sue Davison
Foundation Futures Ltd

WOW, Sue if you are reading this newsletter can I say once again, thank you so much for your kind words, it makes such a difference to our day.

I was searching the HSE [Health and Safety Executive] website for safety related cartoons and I came across this one of an alleged “cowboy” plumber – I know it’s not electrical related but it reminded me of a not so funny story that happened to us about six or seven years ago…

I had moved into our house twelve years ago and then Alison moved in four years later – like many home owners unless you have a blank cheque book you will inherit much of the previous owners bricks and mortar but more to the point their plumbing and heating system. Going into the winter the boiler packed in [its always the winter isn’t it?]. I called out a plumber who I had met briefly through a network group [but for the record he was a visitor not a member – there is a significant difference which will make sense later on]; anyway he turned up promptly to serve as I thought the last rights on the boiler which we think had been installed 12 years before? We were told that the boiler was a “Valliant” “the Rolls Royce of the Heating world” and recommended repair as these boilers last for a long time. When asked about new he was quoting £2000 plus… and the quoted repair was an eye watering £800! After negotiating and “cash in hand” this brought it down to £700 which involved raiding what little savings we had at the time…..

For the record I have been in sales for a very long time which makes me not only a shrewd negotiator and generally very good at sniffing out a dud – but when confronted with a freezing cold house even the best of us can get caught out!! Sadly I can’t name and shame the plumber involved as much as I would like to….

Anyway a few years later we got married [2010 to be exact in case people think I can’t remember our wedding…], well in that following winter [as I said before its always the …….. winter] well you’ve guessed it the “Rolls Royce Boiler of the Heating Industry” packed in, gushing water left right and centre!! When by this time I had met another Plumbing and Heating engineer who was not only a fully paid up member of the networking group I was involved with, but had done lots of reliable work for my friends and I had referred a lot of work his way too, he came out to see us to “definitely” perform the last rights on the Valiant boiler. Can we not get it repaired say I? Well the reply that came back was what you never like to hear – “Mike, I am sorry to tell you this but you have been taken advantaged of” [ripped off in other words] as brand new boilers at the time range from “£800 to £1000”… Thankfully some of our wedding guests had been very generous of whom we will be eternally grateful to – some wedding present, eh?? But it was certainly welcome!

So, as always there has to be a moral to a story…..

Hiring a plumber who is qualified is a given must – but that’s not all, he has to come with recommendations, testimonials, people who will say nice words about him/her, if like me you work regularly within network groups this is easier, but still ask around. If he/she belongs to a recognised association or even a network group then ask around them too. It is necessary in all forms of industry – like the very kind testimonial up above. You work very hard to build up a good, solid and trustworthy reputation, AND if you play your cards right then that very same reputation will return it’s self-back in kind…. 

Appliance manufacturer Dyson has announced the voluntary recall of all models of its bladeless fan heaters.
The company is recalling all AM04 and AM05 heaters due to a potential safety issue. Out of a million heaters sold worldwide, the company said that it was aware of a small number that had short-circuited resulting in a small fire contained within the machine.
There have been no instances of injury or property damage, but the company is recalling all machines and implementing a free engineering fix in each one. For details visit

Anyway thanks so much for your time and have a good day, a good week and a good month of April and if there is anything I can help you with, such as recommending “a good plumber” then please call me.
Mike McCoy
All the very best
ME PAT Services Ltd