A Radstock man has been prosecuted for illegal gas work at properties in Shepton Mallet, Midsomer Norton and Paulton.

John Chalmers worked on boilers at three houses between April and October 2011 without being registered with Gas Safe, Bath Magistrates’ Court heard on 15 May.

An investigation by the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) also established that Mr Chalmers had been convicted for earlier gas offences and signed an undertaking in 2008 not to carry out any further gas work unless he obtained the appropriate Gas Safe registration status.

John Duncan Chalmers pleaded guilty to two separate breaches of the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998, was sentenced to 240 hours of unpaid community work, to be carried out over a 12 month period, and was also ordered to pay £10,000 in costs. In addition, the court told him to pay the owner of the property in Shepton Mallett some £713 in compensation.

HSE inspector Mehtaab Hamid said: “John Chalmers is a serial offender who has already been prosecuted for doing gas work without being registered or competent do so. He knows what the law requires, but he again chose to work outside it.

“The Gas Safe Register exists to protect the public from fitters like him who are prepared to work illegally and carry out potentially dangerous gas work that could put lives at risk.

“Anyone who undertakes gas work must be on the Gas Safe Register and be competent to carry out such work. Cases like this highlights the need for householders to ask for and check the credentials of anyone working at their property, especially where gas is involved.”