Gas and oil safety standard

Inadequate gas or oil safety management can lead to the loss of life and property. We are fully committed to ensuring employees, customers and the general public, are not exposed to any risks that would affect their health and safety. We are fully committed to achieving high levels of safety and quality in the services we deliver, providing homes that are safe to standards that reflect legislative requirements and best practice where appropriate.

Specific regulations apply to the management of gas appliances and installations. We apply the same management regime to oil appliances and installations. This standard therefore applies to gas, oil and solid fuel installations.

This is our Standard:

1.    We have a dedicated Mechanical and Electrical Management team, working consistently across the whole business, this team manages all gas installations and servicing activity.

2.    We maintain membership of the Health and Safety Executive’s (HSE) “approved class of persons”, to work with gas appliances, installations and flues, currently Gas Safe. We only appoint contractors to work on or with gas appliances, installations and flues who are a member of the HSE’s “approved class of persons”, currently Gas Safe.

3.    We employ competent engineers and appoint competent contractors to ensure installations, appliances and flues are installed and maintained in such a  manner that they will be safe. Contracts are procured and effectively managed, ensuring anyone working on gas systems is qualified and registered to do the work required of them before they start any work.

4.    We maintain a register of all properties and appliances requiring servicing, ensuring that this is regularly updated to reflect all changes to our stock (including development, acquisitions, disposals, new installations, changes to existing installations, etc.). This also holds all necessary records associated with installation, servicing, repairs and visits arranged.
 
5.    An annual gas check is carried out on all our owned gas appliances, in accordance with Gas Safety (Installation & Use) Regulations 1998.
We employ competent engineers and appoint competent contractors
to conduct annual safety checks for commercial premises and Landlords Safety Record (LGSR) for our rented premises. Oil appliances are treated in the same way.

6.    We require confirmation from managing agents (or persons/organisations undertaking similar activity for us), this will be validated and recorded in accordance with the agreed procedures all other gas information.

7.    Safety checks are carried out on a 10 month cycle for domestic installations and completed within 12 months of the anniversary date, by a one of our Heating Engineers or appointed contractor. This cycle ensures completion
of all required safety checks within the required 12 month timescale and
we have a target of zero overdues. We ensure that residents receive a copy of the LGSR on completion of the work. Commercial installations have their safety checks undertaken prior to the date required.

8.    We undertake a LGSR on all voids within a week of the property becoming vacant. We will cap the gas supply during void works if, after assessment, we consider that there is a risk of damage to the supply during the void works.

9.    Carbon monoxide alarms are installed and tested in all properties with gas, oil and solid fuel appliances.

10.    We have a clearly defined 90 day process for gaining access to complete servicing work. All appointments are agreed in advance with residents, providing an am or pm slot. We record details of failed access attempts so that we can evidence that we have taken “all reasonable steps” in
the event of an incident. We take access seriously and will take legal action to gain access as a final sanction

11.    We will only cap gas supplies on occupied homes once a detailed risk assessment has been completed and approved by a manager. We will always arrange to visit residents where their supply has been capped so that we can fully understand their circumstances.

12.    We have an annual programme of boiler replacements. As a general rule, we will only replace boilers when an economical repair cannot be completed or where we are unable to readily get hold of spare parts for a particular boiler type.

13.    We report performance of gas compliance monthly within LiveWest.
 
14.    In conjunction with our Health and Safety team, we ensure that any gas or Carbon Monoxide incident or near miss is investigated and necessary actions taken.

15.    We undertake quality assurance checks on 5% of works in progress and completed jobs.

16.    As part of our assurance framework we use CORGI (an independent industry expert) to check and benchmark our performance on 2% of all completed services and 40% of all new boiler installations. this includes checks on all our engineers to ensure their competency.

17.    We continually review legislation, best practice and other requirements and review this standard annually or upon any such change (whichever is  sooner) to ensure it remains current and appropriate.

Solid Fuel

1.    We undertake an annual service and inspection of all solid fuel appliances.

2.    All homes with solid fuel appliances will be provided with appropriate CO alarm protection.

3.    Where solid fuel appliances have been condemned or decommissioned as part of the service, we will ensure that a permanent block up or removal of the appliance is completed in a timely manner.

4.    We will not grant permission for residents to install new solid fuel appliances or to install solid fuel burning appliances. This decision is based on both safety and environmental grounds.

5.    We will not provide retrospective permission for the installation of solid fuel appliances and will ensure prompt removal of the appliance.

6.    Our standard is to remove solid fuel appliances and open fires where possible. This decision is based on both safety and environmental grounds. Where solid fuel appliances are removed and where this is the primary source of heating for existing residents, we will ensure that the property is provided with an appropriate heating system balancing warmth, environmental impact and customer affordability.

7.    Solid fuel appliances are always decommissioned during void works as standard. Heating will be upgraded where the appliance is the primary source of heating.