Sheffield landlords prosecuted for gas safety failings
Two Sheffield landlords were handed suspended jail sentences for failing to maintain gas appliances at a flat they rented to a young woman.
A series of faults were found with appliances and fittings at the property including evidence of carbon monoxide fumes.
A Gas Safe Register investigator decommissioned the boiler, cooker and gas fires in the lounge and dining room after classifying them as ‘immediately dangerous’.
The problem was first identified when council housing officers went to the property in Gleadless Road and noticed a gas fire’s flame burning yellow.
Waheed Ahmid, of Albert Road, Sheffield, and Farhat Basharat, of Violet Bank Road, Sheffield, had pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to three charges under the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations carried out between 3 December 2009 and 2 December 2010.
They were both handed three-month suspended jail sentences for 12 months. Mr Ahmid was also ordered to undertake 150 hours of community service and pay £2,500 towards prosecution costs. Mr Basharat was ordered to undertake 200 hours of community service and pay £5,000 in costs.
The Health and Safety Executive brought last week’s prosecution after finding the appliances and flues in the property had not been annually checked by a registered gas engineer, they had not been maintained in a safe condition as required by law and the tenant had never been given a copy of the gas safety record.
HSE inspector Denise Fotheringham said: ‘It is totally unacceptable to have a property where a tenant’s life is threatened because the gas appliances haven’t been properly installed or looked after.
‘Although there was no injury the appliances were in a shocking condition. Some were spilling carbon monoxide into the rooms where they were sited. It is pure luck no one was made ill or even died.’
All landlords should be aware of the duty to maintain and check the safety of gas appliances supplied with the properties they rent, she added.
Paul Johnston, chief executive of Gas Safe Register, said: ‘Some landlords may think that failing to do an annual check on gas appliances, or having a landlord’s gas safety record isn’t that important, or may save them some money.
‘What they fail to realise is that these checks are legal requirements and are in place to save lives.’