A Cheltenham gas engineer has been sentenced after installing a gas cooker without being registered to do so – his third gas safety conviction in four years.
Cheltenham Magistrates Court heard that on 2 February 2011, Royston Godsell, 72, assembled and installed a gas cooker at a pensioner’s house in Folly Lane, Cheltenham, despite not being registered with Gas Safe Register, the official gas registration body.
The court heard Mr Godsell had been prosecuted twice before for carrying out gas work while not being registered – in 2008 and 2010 – and at the time of the latest offence was subject to a Health and Safety Executive (HSE) prohibition notice, preventing him from carrying out gas work he was not competent to do.
The customer at Folly Lane contacted trading standards after her son-in-law recognised Mr Godsell’s name from his previous convictions. HSE then investigated and discovered that he still had not become Gas Safe registered.
James Lucas, the HSE inspector who carried out the investigation said:
“Mr Godsell has repeatedly failed to register with Gas Safe despite it being a legal requirement for all gas engineers in the United Kingdom. He disregarded his previous convictions and continued to put lives at risk by carrying out gas work while not registered.
“In this case, Mr Godsell not only installed a gas cooker but he also assembled it, so the potential for error was high, and could have had very dangerous or even fatal consequences.”
Paul Johnston, Chief Executive of Gas Safe Register said:
“Every Gas Safe registered engineer has an ID card which not only shows they are who they say they are but which also details which types of appliance they are qualified to work on. Always ask to see the card. You can also check with us by calling 0800 408 5500.”
Royston Edward Godsell, of Springbank Road, Cheltenham admitted breaching Regulation 3 (3) of Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 and was ordered to carry out 80 hours of community service and pay a contribution of £500 towards costs. The court also served a prohibition notice preventing him from carrying out any work on gas installations or pipework for 12 months.
Workers undertaking gas installation and maintenance work must be registered with Gas Safe Register. This new gas registration scheme came into force on 1 April 2009, replacing the CORGI statutory registration scheme. Further information about the gas registration scheme is available at: http://www.gassaferegister.co.uk/about.aspx