Brixham man fined £3,000 for dangerous gas work
A MAN faces a court bill of £6,000 after falsely claiming to be a registered gas engineer.
Sean Collins carried out unsafe work on a gas boiler in July and August last year at an unoccupied house undergoing renovation in Northfields Lane, Brixham.
Health and Safety Executive prosecutors told Torbay Magistrates the work carried out by the 41-year-old Brixham self-employed man was unsafe and dangerous.
The court was told Collins left the flue of the boiler in a dangerous condition.
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He also removed a gas meter and failed to reinstall it, leaving open-ended gas pipes which could have poured gas into the house.
Collins, of Penpethy Road, pleaded guilty of all charges, including falsely claiming to be a registered gas engineer, at the hearing on November 2.
He admitted four offences under the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1988 and one breach of Section 3(2) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974.
He was fined a total of £3,000 and ordered to pay £3,000 in costs.
Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Simon Jones said: "All gas engineers must be members of the Gas Safe Register by law so customers can be sure they are dealing with someone who is properly trained and qualified to do the job.
"Unregistered installers who carry out gas work could expose people to unacceptable risks which can prove fatal.
"Collins pretended to be Gas Safe registered and was happy to take the homeowner's money, disregarding the serious harm and injury he could have caused."
The matter against Collins came to light when the householder could not find the meter and contacted the Gas Safe Register.
Further investigations revealed thCollins falsely advertised himself as a member of the Gas Safe Register and used the organisation's logo on his on-line publicity material.