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Landlord brothers prosecuted for ignoring gas safety

Two brothers from Dudley have been ordered to pay fines and costs of more than £3,000 after they failed to obtain a gas safety record for a property they rented out, putting tenants’ lives at risk.

Philip Hale, 52, of Gayfield Avenue, Brierley Hill and Roger Hale, 50, of Karen Way, Brierley Hill, were investigated by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) after council housing officers found no trace of a gas safety record for the Himley Street property.

HSE wrote to the brothers requesting a copy of the landlord’s gas safety record, a legal requirement. However, the two admitted that they had not had one for eight years.

The tenants also told HSE that they had never seen a gas safety record at any point in their five-year tenancy.

Philip and Roger Hale were prosecuted by HSE at Dudley Magistrates’ Court for breaching gas safety regulations.

HSE also found that two gas fires provided by the landlords to the tenants had been condemned by National Grid following an inspection by them after a gas smell had been detected in the property.

The brothers both pleaded guilty to breaching the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998. Philip Hale was fined £1,000 and Roger Hale was fined £1,500 and both were ordered to pay costs of £464 each.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Pam Folsom said: “Philip and Roger Hale potentially put lives and property in danger by ignoring their responsibilities as landlords of this property.

“It is essential landlords have gas appliances inspected annually. Well- maintained appliances reduce the risks of carbon monoxide poisoning and dangerous gas leaks. Gas safety records are a legal requirement and give tenants the peace of mind they deserve when it comes to the safety of the appliances in their homes.”

Readers' comments (1)

  • Why is the level of punishment in these cases always set so low. It's no deterrent to landlords or installer/maintenance engineers what we need to see is the same attitude to these offences as was displayed recently when an inheritance was confiscated because it was thought it would be used to promote further criminal activity involving drugs. During the enforcement review the confiscation of goods gained through criminal activity was suggested as a way to deter people like this from committing further offences. As usual the powers that be continue to do what they continue to do and offenders keep re-offending it's just a vicious circle which in my opinion can only be broken by a significant change in policy on the part of those involved.

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