Start up and close down electrical generators

Business Sectors (Suites): Lighting for Film and TV
Developed by: ScreenSkills
Approved on: 29 Mar 2020


​This standard is about having a basic awareness of electrical generators and being able to carry out the basic task of starting up a generator.

This standard is also about carrying out other simple tasks on the electrical generator either under the direct supervision of or as directed by the main generator operator.

This standard covers the knowledge and use of electrical standards and codes of practice with codes BS7671 and BS7909.

This standard is for those working as Lighting Technicians and Gaffers.

Performance criteria

You must be able to:

  1. confirm the generator is safely positioned
  2. level the generator when it is necessary to do so
  3. carry out pre-start tests on the cable distribution system with regard to polarity and earthing in accordance with the latest edition of the relevant electrical safety standards and approved codes of practice
  4. start the generator and ensure the controls and systems function according to manufacturer's instructions, prior to electrical energisation
  5. monitor the generator throughout its use in terms of its functioning, balance, loading, fuel and fluid levels
  6. recognize at the earliest stage when a generator is showing signs of faults i.e. pulsing, strain, smoking
  7. follow the relevant safety procedures to shut down the generator safely and efficiently
  8. monitor all users of the generators for loading and safe practices
  9. ensure all tools and equipment are secure and safe for their continued operation

Knowledge and Understanding

You need to know and understand:

  1. health and safety legislation, electrical safety standards and approved codes of practice relating to the operation of the generators

  2. how to start up, monitor while its running and close down the generator

  3. the importance of monitoring for potential hazards

  4. the importance of operating the generator in a level position and checking the generator fluid levels on a daily basis
  5. the maximum loading of sub circuits and distribution boxes
  6. how to identify and rectify hazards relevant to cable routing
  7. how to check the correct functioning of all power distribution equipment in use
  8. the environmental legislation affecting the use and storage of generators
  9. the importance of monitoring all users of the generator
  10. the importance of ensuring all tools and equipment are secure and safe for continued use


Scope Performance

Scope Knowledge





Links To Other NOS

External Links

Version Number


Indicative Review Date

30 Mar 2024





Originating Organisation


Original URN


Relevant Occupations

Arts, Media and Publishing, Crafts, Creative Arts and Design, Media and Communication, Performing Arts, Skilled Trades NEC, Skilled Trades Occupations

SOC Code



generators; electrical generators; start up; shut down; electrical safety standards; codes of practice; safety procedures; power distribution;