Health & Safety
Gas Safety Advice and Information
10 January 2014
There are approximately 7,500 unregistered gas fitters actively working in the UK today with 250,000 illegal gas jobs done every year by unregistered gas fitters. Badly-fitted and poorly-serviced gas appliances can cause gas leaks, explosions, fires, and carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning.
Dangerous gas work can kill and 18 people died and 310 were injured last year reports the HSE. Carbon monoxide poisoning - 15 reported deaths last year reports the HSE. Carbon monoxide symptoms can be mistaken for flu, food poisoning, viral infections and tiredness. A carbon monoxide alarm costs around £15 to £20 - every home should have CO Alarms and Smoke Alarms - but they are not a substitute for regular servicing.
Gas Safe Register
The 'Gas Safe Register' is the government approved registration scheme for gas engineers in the UK, Isle of Man, and Guernsey. The Gas Safe Register replaced the 'CORGI' gas registration scheme as of April 9, 2009. Corgi ID cards are no longer valid. Only Gas Safe Register registered engineers can work on gas and fit, fix and service boilers, gas fires and most types of gas cookers in your home - it's the law.
There are more than 120,000 Gas Safe Registered engineers. There are more than 60,000 Gas Safe Registered businesses. All gas appliances need regular servicing and a gas safety check every year (or in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions). All landlords and housing associations are legally obliged to ensure that all gas appliances and related pipes and flues within their rental properties are checked every 12 months for safety. They must issue a copy of the certificate to the tenant within 28 days of the test and give a copy to any new tenants moving in.
Not all gas engineers can work on all gas appliances. Gas Safe Registered engineers carry an ID card that shows the type of gas work they are legally registered and qualified to do e.g. cooker, boilers, gas fires etc.
You can check card ID details instantly online. If someone other than a Gas Safe Registered engineer carries out gas work in your home, you are risking the safety of both yourself and your family, other residents, visitors and your property.
Finding a Gas Safe Registered Engineer
Every engineer on the Gas Safe Register carries an ID card with their own unique licence number. The back of the ID card lists what gas appliances your engineer is qualified to work on. The message from Gas Safe Register is clear: Before you have any gas work done in your home, make sure you ask for the ID card and check the front and back.
There is a simple search and identity check to find a Gas Safe Registered engineer.
- Find an engineer in your area online at the Gas Safe Register website: http://www.gassaferegister.co.uk/
- Call the free helpline: 0800 408 5500
Report Un-registered Gas Fitters
One in three people would fit a gas appliance themselves to save money. This is extremely risky and dangerous. If you suspect an illegal gas worker report it to Gas Safe Register:Gas Safe Register
PO BOX 6804
- Phone, free: 0800 408 5500
- Website: www.GasSafeRegister.co.uk/reportillegal
Free Gas Safety Inspection
If you've had gas work done in the last six months you can nominate your property for a free gas safety inspection.
Gas Safe Register's Top Ten Tips
- Have all your gas appliances, including boilers, gas cookers and gas fires, safety checked annually.
- Always use a Gas Safe Registered engineer to fit, fix and check gas appliances in your home - it's the law and will help keep you safe.
- Always ask to see an engineer's Gas Safe ID card and check the back of the card to ensure they are qualified to carry out the specific type of gas work you need.
- To find a Gas Safe Registered engineer in your area, call the free helpline on 0800 408 5500 or go to http://www.gassaferegister.co.uk/.
- Recognise the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning - headaches, dizziness, nausea, breathlessness, collapse and loss of consciousness.
- Check gas appliances for warning signs that they are not working properly e.g. lazy yellow flames instead of crisp blue ones, black marks or stains on or around the appliance and too much condensation in the room.
- Buy an audible carbon monoxide alarm for your home and make sure it is located near to your gas appliances in accordance with the manufacturer's guidance. Carbon monoxide can leak from appliances and kill.
- Only use gas appliances for their intended purpose e.g. don't use a gas oven to heat a room or use a gas barbeque inside the house.
- Always ensure there is enough ventilation for your gas appliances to allow them to burn correctly and make sure you are not blocking any air vents that provide an air supply to the gas appliance.
- Anybody working with gas has to be Gas Safe Registered by law. To report someone working without registration, call Gas Safe Register on the free phone number 0800 408 5500.