Gas Safety Compliance and Covid-19

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Six months into 2020 and it is the safe to say that the world as we know it is a very different place as a result of the Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

The outcome of the crisis has meant that sectors and organisations across the UK have had to become more flexible and versatile to meet the new ‘norms’, which includes; more people working from home, fewer individuals venturing out of their homes and a greater desire to shield and protect our society’s most vulnerable members.

One sector in particular that is dealing with large scale change is that of housing and social housing.

Our recent blog that looked into fire safety compliance amidst Covid-19, touched on the results of the first survey run by the Regulator of Social Housing (RSH), focusing on the delivery of compliance programmes. Key findings from the survey identified that most providers are dealing with the management of fire safety compliance, however, they were increasingly concerned with the lack of PPE, along with maintaining safe staff levels.

A month on from the first survey and the latest findings have now been released with a prominent focus on the delivery and access to complete gas surveys.

In fact, 98 percent of registered providers with 1,000 homes or more who filled out the survey stated that because of reduced access to properties as a result of people either self-isolating or shielding, an increasing backlog of gas safety checks has occurred. Meaning that more and more properties are currently operating without a gas safety check, and the RSH only expects to see this rise.

But what can I do to continue to demonstrate my gas safety compliance?

When it comes to the legal duty of landlords you are obliged to repair and maintain gas pipework, flues and appliances in a safe condition, to ensure an annual gas safety check on each appliance and flue, and to keep a record of each safety check.

Where it is not possible for you to get access to a property, for instance if a tenant is self-isolating, then you must prove that you have taken reasonable steps to attempt to carry out the check, and keep records of communication to demonstrate that you have attempted to gain access. It is vital that you arrange for the safety check to be conducted as soon as both parties are available

For more information regarding your legal obligations, you can find out more here.

How Pennington Choices can help…

If you are in the position where you and your organisation is struggling for resource, or unable to secure the services of your usual gas engineers or compliance leads, we can assist.

At Pennington Choices we offer registered providers and landlords a range of advice and services to their compliance issues to ensure that they remain compliant, especially during the current crisis.

Having worked for over 20 years’, delivering projects to social housing landlords nationally, we have significant consulting and gas safety expertise.

For more information on how we can help your organisation, or to have a chat about your current situation, you can get in touch with our Head of Consultancy, Sarah Davies by clicking here.

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