A self-employed heating installer from King's Lynn has been fined for illegally carrying out sub-standard gas work at two homes in Norfolk.
King's Lynn Magistrates' Court heard last week (8 August) that Ryan Neale, trading as R. Neale Plumbing and Heating, installed gas appliances and associated gas pipework at properties in King's Lynn and Dersingham despite not being Gas Safe registered.
Anyone undertaking gas work must be recognised by Gas Safe, but Mr Neale had let his registration lapse. However, he still agreed to fit a gas boiler at a home in Cresswell Street, King's Lynn, on 25 May 2012, and a gas fire at another home in Brenda Collison Close, Dersingham on 28 May 2012.
Neale was fined a total of £2,000 and ordered to pay a further £1,000 in costs after pleading guilty to two separate breaches of the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 for his work at each property – four charges in total.
After the hearing, HSE inspector Paul Unwin said: "Every year, people die of carbon monoxide poisoning as a result of gas appliances and flues being badly fitted or poorly serviced. It was only a matter of luck that the householders at these two properties were not affected, despite being put at risk.
"This case highlights the need for householders to exercise caution when they select people to work in their home. They should always check the person they commission is registered with Gas Safe and competent to carry out the work, and obtain references for similar works done."
Russell Kramer, chief executive of Gas Safe Register, reiterated: "Every Gas Safe registered engineer has an ID card which shows who they are and the type of work they are qualified to carry out. Customers should ask to see this and check the engineer is qualified to do the job in hand. You can also check your engineer by calling us on 0800 408 5500 or by visiting www.gassaferegister.co.uk.