Misleading test for dead

Live connects to one side of the load, neutral to the other side of the load; the load is placed in-between live and neutral. ... So live is never connected directly to neutral, but through the load.

I think that the (OP's) primary problem has been one of semantics/terminology, in that he seemingly thought that "neutral" could be used to refer to "the conductor connected to the neutral side of the load". Of course, in the absence of a switch (or whatever) in the neutral, that is true.

As you will realise, my greater concern related to an apparent lack of understanding of the most basic of electrical principles.

Kind Regards, John
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