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Engineer’s poor work endangered Plymouth pensioner

18 October 2013

A Plymouth gas engineer endangered the life of a pensioner by leaving a fire in an unsafe condition, a court has heard.

Daniel Wiles, 31, of Wesley Place, Plymouth, failed to properly clean the appliance at a home in Villiers Close in the city.

He then failed to declare the fire “at risk” despite it having a damaged and inadequate seal that could have allowed poisonous carbon monoxide fumes to escape.

Mr Wiles was prosecuted today (18 October) by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) after an investigation found serious concerns with his work.

He was fined a total of £600 and ordered to pay £1,500 in costs and £60 in compensation at Plymouth Magistrates’ Court after pleading guilty a breach of the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE Inspector, Simon Jones, said:

“Mr Wiles’ failure to declare the fire “at risk” put a pensioner’s life in danger and his neglect could have had tragic consequences. Members of the public who put their trust in gas engineers have a right to expect the work will be done thoroughly.

“In this case, the gas fire should have been properly cleaned, declared unsafe and then isolated because of the poor seal.

“Gas engineers must always ensure they do a proper job when working on gas appliances because lives depend on their actions.”

Further information on gas safety can be found on the HSE website at

Notes to Editors

  1. The Health and Safety Executive is Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. It aims to reduce work-related death, injury and ill health. It does so through research, information and advice; promoting training; new or revised regulations and codes of practice; and working with local  authority partners by inspection, investigation and enforcement.
  2. Regulation 26(9)(d) of the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 states: ‘Where a person performs work on a gas appliance he shall immediately thereafter examine its operation so as to ensure its safe functioning and forthwith take reasonable practicable steps to notify any defect to the responsible person (in this case the homeowner).
  3. HSE news releases are available at

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