Today marks the start of Gas Safety Week, an annual campaign to raise awareness of gas safety and maintenance of gas appliances in the UK.
The initiative is co-ordinated by Gas Safe Register with support from the gas industry including retailers, manufacturers and consumer bodies.
Gas Safe Register estimates that there is a hardcore of around 7,500 illegal gas fitters operating across the UK and up to 250,000 illegal gas jobs may be carried out each year.
While the vast majority of these illicit jobs are understood to be linked to the domestic sector, the catering sector continues to be reminded of the presence of rogue operators undertaking work in the market.
Recently a self-employed catering equipment maintenance worker was ordered to pay more than £2,000 in fines and compensation for carrying out illegal gas work at a cafe and restaurant in Cornwall.
Alistair ‘Nick’ Clyne, trading as Clyne Catering, was found guilty of working on a LPG deep fat fryer, water boiler and piping despite not being Gas Safe registered.
Gas safety has also been high on the agenda of catering equipment bodies such as CESA and CEDA over the past 18 months.
The organisations now operate a Register of Qualified Engineers, which is designed to help foodservice companies locate catering engineers that are suitably qualified.
With national coverage and events throughout the week, it is hoped that Gas Safety Week will again remind end-users of the importance of maintaining gas appliances and using Gas Safe registered engineers.