The Health and safety
Executive (HSE) is advising tenants and home-owners to have any gas-fired appliance carefully checked and serviced by a qualified and competent person if they have doubts about its operational safety
Currently, only CORGI is approved by HSE to register competent gas installers.
In 2005/6 16 people died from carbon monoxide poisoning caused by appliances and flues that have not been properly installed or maintained. Tenants should also ensure that they are provided with current gas safety
The warning comes after landlord Peter Neil Ingram from Lowsonford was fined a total of £2,000 with £1,777 costs by Stratford-upon-Avon Magistrates Court. Prosecution follows a HSE investigation into the removal of part of a flue on a rented house in Wetherby Way, Stratford-upon-Avon. Mr Ingram pleaded guilty to breaching the Gas safety
(Installations and Use) Regulations 1998 and was fined £1,000 for breaching each of Regulations 8(2) and 36 (2).
In July 2006 the tenant called out an engineer after a Carbon Monoxide detector had activated and the tenants 18-month-old son had displayed sickness symptoms. The engineer disconnected the gas supply and served a Warning Notice marked immediately dangerous. The engineer noted that the flue of the central heating
boiler, on which Mr Peter Ingram, husband of the property
owner, had been working, was incorrectly fitted and highly likely to cause the generation of toxic Carbon Monoxide gas within the property
Mr Ingram knew that work on gas appliances was to be conducted only by suitably qualified Corgi-registered installers but even when challenged by a neighbour had continued to undertake the work. A flue terminal was absent, the height of the flue was insufficient over a conservatory roof and the installation was left with other potentially dangerous faults. access
to the flue terminal had been gained via a neighbouring property
and the occupier of that property
informed their neighbour that his landlord had altered the gas flue installation in a way that was obviously incorrect, even to a layman.
Prosecuting Inspector Neil Craig said: "The dangers of incorrectly fitted gas installations are well known. Such dangerous work, like that seen at the property
in Stratford, puts lives at risk from both carbon monoxide poisoning and fires in the home.
"This case should serve as a reminder to home owners and tenants that any work undertaken on a gas-fired appliance should only be carried out by a suitable and qualified specialist in that field. This instance should also be a warning to landlords that they must provide tenants with a current Gas safety
Certificate and work should only be conducted by persons who are qualified, competent and Corgi-registered."