What is a Safety Test?

S. Zaimov

A safety test is a test administered on a product or piece of equipment in order to make sure it is operational and non-hazardous. Before reaching the end-user, there are a number of safety checks that need to be passed. Such tests are necessary requirements in many lines of businesses, and their improper application can lead to legal issues and court battles.

Numerous safety checks must be passed before an airplane can engage in flight.
Numerous safety checks must be passed before an airplane can engage in flight.

Product safety testing standards offer guidance regarding the design and construction of specific types of products. Understanding these standards and applying them to their products is something manufacturers everywhere must do. To comply with global specifications, significant developments are always taking place to ensure these standards are being met. The goal of these tests is to protect both the eventual user and the people handling and assembling the products.

Safety tests will simulate damage done to a plane.
Safety tests will simulate damage done to a plane.

A car or crash safety test simulates the impact a traffic accident will have on a vehicle, and studies how the driver and passengers can be best protected. Such tests typically involve crash dummies that replicate the physiology of a human body. The dummies come in various shapes and sizes to represent the many different body types people have. Most are made out of metal and plastics. These dummies simulate how a human would be affected by collisions of different speeds and angles.

In most countries, certification from a civil aviation authority is required for airplanes in order to be permitted to fly. Much like a car test, an air safety test inspects what impact in-air accidents will have on passengers. Due to the nature of the transportation, things like air pressure and weather conditions are taken into much greater consideration. These safety tests also simulate what lightning, snow, and fire damages will have on the wings and engine of the plane.

Electrical safety tests are some of the most important test because of the amount of danger involved in dealing with electric currents. Temperature rises, short circuits, and overloads are some of the leading contributors to accidents. A lot of manufacturers engage in pre-compliance testing to guarantee an electrical product is designed to meet the necessary performance levels before committing to mass-scale production. Less hazardous machines, like medical equipment, refrigerators, and air conditioning, fall under the mechanical testing category.

Some products have a built-in safety test which allows machinery to test itself. These self-tests work to discover changes in temperature, communications, and power supply. Batteries, for example, often undergo great stress and need to protect themselves from overheating and failing. Public telephones regularly perform check-up tests in order to detect any problems with the connection. Internet Protocol (IP) addresses rely on transmitter and receiver tests to make sure they are on-line.

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