The owner of a building company from Leatherhead in Surrey has been prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) for breaching gas safety law after instructing an employee to reposition a gas flue, exposing a young family to serious health risks.
Josephine Zielinski, trading as JBZ Builders, told the employee – her son – to move a flue serving a gas boiler at a property in Holly Hill, Tunbridge Wells, as part of work on an extension.
Neither the company nor the employee was Gas Safe registered so were not qualified to carry out the work. The employee moved the flue to vent from another external wall in June 2013.
However, when the family called in a plumber to flush the system some time later, he noticed the flue installation was sub-standard and reported the issue to Gas Safe Register. During a visit on 11 November 2013, a registered gas engineer investigated and classed several parts of the installation as either ‘at risk’ or not to current standards.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) was alerted and charged Ms Zielinski with a breach of gas safety regulations after undertaking its own investigation.
On 9 September Sevenoaks Magistrates’ Court fined Ms Zielinski £1,000 and ordered her to pay £845 in costs after admitting the breach.