Gas safety is vitally important in all homes. Landlords have to ensure that their properties are fit for purpose and safe for tenants at all times. Landlords have a legal obligation under the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 to arrange a maintenance check by a registered engineer for all pipe work, appliances and flues in the property they are renting out. They must also ensure that an annual gas safety check is carried out by a registered gas engineer.
Faults or problems with gas appliances can put tenants’ lives at serious risk. All houses should be equipped with gas safety features such as carbon monoxide alarms and if a tenant fears a problem with any gas appliance or suspects a leak they should inform the landlord immediately and follow the relevant safety procedures.
The biggest dangers of unsafe gas appliances in a household are gas leaks, fires and carbon monoxide poisoning.
Gas leaks occur when appliances or pipework become faulty. The gas used in households is not poisonous but is highly flammable and can lead to house fires or even explosions. Companies add a distinctive odour to gas, meaning tenants should have no problems in identifying a leak. Damaged pipes and/or rusting should be checked by an engineer and tenants have a duty to inform their landlord, who can arrange for an inspection.
Carbon monoxide (CO) gas is extremely dangerous. It is a poisonous gas that can lead to nausea, headaches, loss of consciousness and even death. Carbon monoxide is produced by the incomplete burning of natural gas. This occurs as a result of faulty or poorly fitted appliances. In houses with active chimneys it can also occur if flues or vents become blocked.
Carbon monoxide is odourless and colourless making it difficult to detect. However, all houses should be fitted with a carbon monoxide alarm that detects carbon monoxide in the air.
Landlords are obliged to keep their properties fit for purpose and safe at all times and so any gas concerns raised by tenants should be dealt with swiftly and effectively.
A tenant should allow the landlord reasonable time to fix the problem to a decent standard, in the case of gas issues it is imperative that they are dealt with immediately due to the high risk factor. If your landlord has failed to carry out their duties and carry out the required repairs you may be entitled to compensation.
If you think you have a potential claim, you should get in touch with a specialist housing solicitor. Our team of dedicated housing lawyers at LAWTEC Solicitors are well-equipped and experienced to handle all housing matters including disrepair caused by a landlord and problems relating to gas safety. Our team will advise you on what actions can be taken and how much compensation you may be entitled to.
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