Gas fitters are being reminded of the importance of being Gas Safe Registered, after a self-employed man was imprisoned for 16 months when faulty work was discovered that he had carried out while being falsely Gas Safe registered.
What is the Gas Safe Register?
The Gas Safe Register is the official list of businesses or personnel who are registered to work safely and legally on boilers, cookers, fires and all other gas appliances. This replaced the CORGI registration body in 2009, and by law all gas engineers must be on the Gas Safe Register. This is an easy and accessible means for people and other organisations to check that a potential worker is legally approved and competent to carry out work for you.
In order to apply to the register, you need relevant qualifications and evidence of your competence before taking the assessment. This evidence of competence needs to be through ACS, NVQ/SVQ or the Qualification Credit Framework.
The consequences of unsafe gas work from non-registered personnel
Between May 2015 and July 2016, Nottingham Crown Court heard that Richard Trezise had carried out work at seven locations while using the registration of a business that had never heard of him. He had left customers with a series of problems through faulty installations that presented hazardous risks of gas leaks. Furthermore, Mr Trezise had previously pleaded guilty to 21 offences under the Gas Safety (installations and use) Regulations 1998, for which he was under a Prohibition Notice. He was consequently sentenced to 16 months in prison.
This case has highlighted the importance of gas fitters being Gas Safe registered and ensuring the highest standards of gas work being carried out. The three main reasons for this ensure that very common scenarios are fully controlled:
Problems are rectified properly: If you detect a gas leak or are wanting a boiler installed, the Gas Safe Register ensures that this work is carried out by a competent person who you immediately know will be of the correct standard. Gas fitting work on a commercial business is usually on a much larger and more complex scale than domestic work, and hence presents more challenges. And while the Gas Safe registration is critical for all gas work, the scale and scope of commercial business work particularly highlights this importance.
Avoiding DIY: Some businesses may be tempted to cut costs and deploy internal maintenance staff to carry out gas work within the organisation. However, the Gas Safe Register exists to make it easy for businesses to find and access qualified personnel, and also to get their own staff fully qualified and registered. Carrying out DIY work offers no assurance that the work has been completed to the required standards, and hence the Gas Safe Register offers that guarantee of satisfaction and safety.
Landlord responsibilities: Where commercial properties are let from a landlord, it is the responsibility of that landlord to use Gas Safe registered personnel, and to ensure gas appliances are checked and maintained every 12 months. Some commercial let properties are of questionable standard, in terms of upkeep and building maintenance, and the Gas Safe Register allows you to check whether a property has been suitably maintained before you agree to let it, and to check your landlord is keeping up with his/her responsibilities during the tenancy.
At Robinsons MEA, all our gas engineers are fully Gas Safe registered, so we can always offer you that assurance of safe and legal completion of work to the standards required. Call us today to discuss your mechanical requirements.