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West Midlands Firm And Director Illegally Performed Dangerous Gas Work For Restaurants For Years

By Kevin Burke
30th June, 2014

This article about gas safety issues comes courtesy of 247 Home Rescue, a UK-based gas boiler breakdown cover firm.

A company from the West Midlands and the director of said company have been fined for gas safety failings.Gas Safety

In a hearing at Leicester Magistrates Court on June 27th, Kaysor Ahmed, 42, from Wednesbury Road in Walsall, was fined £6,600 with additional costs of £2,028 and was banned from directing a company for two years, while Sylhet Welding UK Ltd, of Bilston's Oxford Street, was also fined £6,600 with costs of £1,118, after pleading guilty to breaches of the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998. Ahmed also admitted breaching the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) had found that the company had illegally performed gas work at a number of restaurants across the south and the Midlands, putting the lives of business owners, workers and customers in danger.

Ahmed had performed gas work himself, despite not being on the Gas Safe Register, and had employed other unregistered people to perform gas work over a prolonged period.

Sylhet had therefore performed a variety of different gas work. The firm, which specialised in the supply and production of cooking ranges and other industrial catering equipment, had been found to have worked on gas appliances in the Bengal Spice and Rickshaw restaurants in Ashby-de-la-Zouch on February 2nd 2012. This had involved replacing flame supervision fittings, disconnecting and reconnecting a gas valve, and installing gas cooker ranges.

Furthermore, the firm had also performed illegal gas work at Weymouth's Khazana restaurant, at Wellington's Snow Spice restaurant, at Bedford's Saffron Indian restaurant, at Dunkenswell's Viceroy, at Gloucester's Barbuchi Cuisine, at The Crown in Olidham, and at the Shah Manzill, in the Hampshire region o0f Liss.

Following the hearing, HSE Inspector Graham Tompkins said it was "only a matter of luck" that the company's illegal gas work did not lead to a serious injury or death. He remarked that the company, in its "various incarnations", had been repeatedly warned about the need to be Gas Safe-registered when working on gas appliances and fittings, but had failed to adhere to these warnings.

He described some of the gas fittings the company had installed as being in "appalling conditions", putting restaurants' customers and workers at "real risk" of an explosion or fire.

But fires and gas blasts are not the only dangers the company's work could have potentially created, with Mr Tompkins pointing out that other serious health conditions such as Carbon Monoxide poisoning could have also occurred.

Gas Safe Register Chief Executive Russell Kramer noted that around 20% of all illegal gas work investigated by registered engineers is found to be "immediately dangerous".

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