The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) today warned Cumbrian businesses and residents to check that gas workers are appropriately accredited by CORGI before allowing them to carry out gas fitting or repair work.
The warning comes after a Barrow heating company was today fined £2,000 and ordered to pay £2,732.00 costs after pleading guilty at Barrow Magistrates Court to two criminal charges brought by HSE over the faulty installation of a boiler at a property in Barrow by an employee who was not registered with CORGI.
Andrew John Major was a director and employee of Lakeland Underfloor Heating Specialists Limited of Brow Avenue, Newbarns in Barrow and was involved in installing a Wolf combi boiler in the loft at Bank House Farm at Broadgate in Hallthwaites.
Following a dispute with the property owner about Mr Major’s CORGI registration, another registered firm discovered a leak where a pipe connected to the boiler and other installation faults.
The company pleaded guilty to two charges of two charges:
- that they had breached Regulation 3(3) of the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 by allowing a person not a member of a class of persons approved for the time being by HSE to carry out installation work on the boiler;
- and that work on the boiler was not carried out in accordance with appropriate standards and in such a way as to prevent danger to any person, in contravention of Regulation 5(3).
HSE Inspector Clint Backhouse said:
"Gas appliances that are faulty or poorly installed can lead to death from carbon monoxide poisoning and fire or explosion. That is why the law requires those working on them to be fully trained and registered with CORGI.
"Fortunately there were no injuries or fatalities in this case, but the potential for disaster was there. It was first discovered there was a problem with the boiler installation because the engineer brought in by the property owner detected a strong smell of gas when entering the loft at the outset.
"It was very fortunate that the leaked gas had not found a source of ignition by then. This occurrence has shown, fortunately without serious consequences, how important it is for anyone carrying out work on gas systems to possess the necessary expertise, something that the statutory registration scheme run by CORGI is there to ensure."