The Gas Safe Register
Why you should always choose a Gas Safe Registered engineer
The Gas Safe Register is a public register of all gas engineers in the UK who are qualified to carry out work on domestic and commercial properties. This includes installation, maintenance, servicing, inspection and testing of gas appliances. The register was established by the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) under the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 to provide consumers with confidence that they are employing safe registered technicians when they use natural gas for heating or cooking.
The HSE oversees this process which is done through periodic registration checks, at least once every five years for individual engineers. The inspections also include checking qualifications held by each engineer against their entry on the register. If any changes have occurred since their last registration check then these must be recorded on their Gas Safe Register record. Each year they publish a report that is publicly available via their website, detailing the number of visits undertaken.
The Gas Safe Register has been developed to correspond with industry best practice for gas registration schemes, which are now adopted by many countries around the world as proof of competence by gas practitioners. This includes more than fifty countries from Europe, the USA and beyond. In North America, the National Fuel Gas Code states that all workers who work on gas installations must be registered with a utility company or a government agency such as the National Board of Boiler and Pressure Vessel Inspectors.
In 2005, after extensive consultation throughout the industry, Gas Safe Register was successfully introduced across England and Wales.
The development of the register involved input from industry, customers and partner organisations. Key to its establishment was a strong desire from these groups for a UK-wide scheme, which was delivered when Gas Safe Register merged with CORGI registration in 2006.
Risks with an unregistered gas worker
When you hire a gas worker, it is important to know that they are qualified and registered with the Gas Safe Register. This ensures that they have been vetted by the HSE and can be trusted to do their job well. There are many risks associated with hiring unregistered workers, which include:
-The risk of explosion due to gas leaks or improper installation.
-Incorrectly installed appliances may not work as efficiently as possible and could lead to higher bills for homeowners.
-Unqualified workers may not comply with the latest safety legislation so there’s a risk of health and safety breaches including carbon monoxide poisoning from faulty boilers, fires caused by blocked chimneys, explosions from incorrectly fitted gas cookers or heaters, or poor ventilation due to heating system blockages.
-Unqualified workers may not be insured in the event of accident or injury, leading to more costly repairs if they are carried out by professionals.
-Can result in sub-standard work which could impact on the value of your home if you decide to sell it at a later date.
-If an appliance is installed or serviced by a gas fitter who isn’t registered, it doesn't qualify for the Government safety scheme which offers you protection under law if your boiler blows up, there's a flood, or your cooker catches fire.
Certification through Gas Safe Register makes sure that gas work is undertaken to the highest standards of safety, that appliances are installed correctly and kept safe. It gives consumers the confidence they need to know their homes are in good hands.
1- Competent person can test appliances if they have undergone training through Gas Safe Register or completed specific training modules.
2- Ensure any work carried out on your gas system is carried out by a Gas Safe Register engineer.
For any work that needs doing on your gas appliances and pipework you should only use a registered Gas Safe Register engineer or service technician. You can search for engineers in your area online at www.gassaferegister.co.uk, enter your postcode and find all the registered engineers in your area, along with their business addresses and contact details.
If you're not sure whether an engineer is Gas Safe Register registered, ask them for their Gas Safe Register ID number. If they don't have one or they can't show it to you, then they should not be carrying out any work on your gas appliances.
Penalties for gas fitters who aren't registered with Gas Safe Register range from £100 to £5,000.
Gas Safe Register ID card
The Gas Safe Register ID card is an important tool for both customers and gas fitters.
The introduction of this card was the result of a growing problem with unregistered gas workers in England and Wales, who were carrying out their work without any qualifications or training to speak of. The government had no way to enforce safety standards if these people did something wrong because they weren't registered at all. As a result, the HSE developed the Gas Safe Register ID card as part of its strategy to encourage more registration among gas workers - it's simple for employees to show that they are qualified when needed.
It's easy enough for customers too: just ask your local engineer for his/her Gas Safe Register ID number before you let them do any work. This number is a quick and easy way to check that they're a registered Gas Safe Register engineer or service technician.
Gas Safe Register ID cards have been issued since April 2006, when the new system was introduced by the HSE. At that time, all engineers who had previously been certified were automatically transferred over to the new system.
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