Landlord prosecuted for failing to adhere to gas safety laws
Michael J Smith failed to maintain gas appliances and pipework or get them safety-checked within 12 months at the Conisbrough property, and did not give his tenant the necessary Landlord's Gas Safety Record.
When served with an Improvement Notice by the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) requiring him to get the safety check done, he ignored it.
Mr Smith's tenant told HSE that a Landlord's Gas Safety Record had not been provided and no one had come to the property to carry out any servicing or work on the gas appliances. HSE contacted Mr Smith asking for a copy of the gas record, but got no response.
A Gas Safe registered engineer brought in by the HSE to examine the tenant's gas system in January 2010 identified five 'at risk' defects.
Doncaster Magistrates fined Michael J Smith of Grange Road, Bessacarr, a total of £400 and ordered him to pay £1,000 in costs after he pleaded guilty to three breaches of the Gas Safety Regulations and an offence of non-compliance with the Improvement Notice.
HSE Inspector Mark Welsh said:
"On average 20 people are killed every year because of faulty gas appliances.
Mr Smith blatantly disregarded a law designed to safeguard tenants from potentially fatal effects of carbon monoxide poisoning.
"He chose to put his tenant at risk and failed to take action even when given ample opportunity to do so when given an Improvement Notice saying exactly what needed to be done and when.
"Landlords must, by law, make sure gas appliances in their rental properties are maintained, have a gas safety check carried out every 12 months by a registered Gas Safe engineer and give tenants a copy of the current Landlord Gas Safety Record."
- The Health and Safety Executive is Britain's national regulator for workplace health and safety. It aims to prevent death, injury and ill health. It does so through research, information and advice, promoting training, new or revised regulations and codes of practice, and working with local authority partners by inspection, investigation and enforcement. www.hse.gov.uk
- Regulation 36(2)(a) of the Gas Safety (Installation & Use) Regulations 1998 states: "A landlord shall ensure that there is maintained in a safe condition a) any relevant gas fittings; and b) any flue which serves any relevant gas fitting, so as to prevent the risk of injury to any person in lawful occupation of relevant premises."
- Regulation 36(3)(a) of the Gas Safety (Installation & Use) Regulations 1998 states: "A landlord shall ensure that each appliance and flue to which that duty extends is checked for safety within 12 months of being installed and at intervals of not more than 12 months since it was last checked for safety (whether such check was made pursuant to these Regulations or not)."
- Regulation 36 (6)(a) states that a landlord shall ensure a copy of the (gas safety record) is given to the tenant
- More information about the duties of landlords can be found at: http://www.hse.gov.uk/gas/domestic/faqlandlord.htm
- Further information about the gas registration scheme is available at: http://www.gassaferegister.co.uk/about.aspx