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£16,000 fine for building company that removed kitchen’s boiler flue

A building company has been fined £16,000 after it removed a domestic boiler flue and left its products of combustion escaping into a new extension.

Birmingham Magistrates’ Court heard that MD Building Contractors Ltd, from Oldbury, was contracted to build an extension to the kitchen at Brooklyn Avenue, Aston, Birmingham, between 26 July and 28 August 2017.

The HSE, prosecuting, found that before work started, a gas boiler had been located in the kitchen and its chimney/flue exited through the rear wall of the property. During the work the original flue outlet was removed and an external wall was built around it. This had the effect of completely enclosing the flue with no direct external exit point for the boiler to vent outside.

As a result, the family of six were exposed to the risk of products of combustion, including carbon monoxide.

MD Building Contractors of Oak Road, Oldbury pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 8(3) of the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998. The company was fined £16,000 and ordered to pay costs of £513.10.

Its director Manjit Singh Dhaliwal, of Manor Road, Halesowen, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 37 of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974. He was fined £2,000 and ordered to pay costs of £431.50.

HSE principal inspector Tony Mitchell, speaking after the prosecution, said: “Manjit Singh Dhaliwal was negligent in his duties as sole director to ensure that, during refurbishment of the property, existing gas fittings were not adversely affected.”

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