BLOG: Promoting Gas Safety in the homes we manage
15 September 2021
A Landlord’s Gas Safety Check is a legal requirement and a crucial piece of documentation which proves the appliances within the homes we manage have been checked by a qualified Gas Safe engineer within the last 12 months. It’s a vital part of our legal duties as a landlord to ensure that residents in the homes we manage have a safe environment to live in.
My team are responsible for making sure every general rented, Intermediate Rent, Agency and subsidiary SW9 property with a gas supply is serviced every year. This works out to just under 10,500 homes.
Why we need your help
The contractors we work with usually send my team about 70 properties that haven’t provided access to their homes for a gas safety check. As a team, we then assess each of these properties and try to contact the residents ourselves. I would say on average half of these answer the phone, email, or text message I send them and are willing to book an appointment – it is the other 50% that we really struggle contacting. So, if you’re contacted by Network for a gas safety check in your property, it would be great for you to provide us access to your home and make sure it's safe!
The legal process
When contractors can’t access residents homes following all three of our contractor attempts, it is then passed back to our Gas Team to try and contact these residents. If this contact is then unsuccessful, we’ll start investigations into why we cannot get hold of the resident as there may be vulnerabilities.
At the same time, we begin legal action in order to gain entry into the property. This can be through two ways:
- A proportionality assessment (risk assessment) which considers any physical or mental vulnerabilities of the resident in the home we are trying to access. We do this through contacting organisations that may know if the resident is vulnerable and if entering their property would impact them in any way.
- The other way is attending court and getting an injunction to enter the property.
Once the assessment has been signed or we have been awarded the injunction from the court, Michael Clarke will arrange a forced entry for within the next couple of days, this includes booking an Oakray/T Brown engineer, security team and locksmith.
Forced entry will always be a last resort for Network, and we will always try and contact you first to access your homes for gas safety checks.
Below are the three main risks from having an unsafe gas appliance in your home and why it’s important you
provide Network access for gas safety checks.
- Gas leaks - A gas leak can cause fires or explosions. During a gas safety check, a Gas Safe registered engineer will do a visual inspection of pipework and a tightness test to confirm there aren’t any gas leaks.
- Fires and explosions - Safe appliances burn gas in a controlled way, but a faulty appliance or pipework may leak gas which can then be ignited, causing a fire or explosion.
- Carbon monoxide poisoning - Carbon monoxide (CO) is a highly poisonous gas that can be especially deadly because you can’t see, taste or smell it.
Physical Symptoms of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Gas, Electrical and Fire Safety Week 13 – 17 September 2021
Keep an eye out for more information and blogs about gas, electrical and fire safety, which we'll publish on our website each day this week.
Also come along to our virtual 'Meet the Teams’ event on 15 September 2021 at 6pm to 7pm where you'll get to meet the Gas, electrical and Fire Safety teams and find out more about how to keep your family safe in your home.
If you want to find out more about Gas Safety Week, take a look at the Gas Safety Week 2021 national campaign.