Inspection: what to expect and how to prepare

This is an abridged version of the article that appears in the July-August 2023 edition of Registered Gas Engineer magazine.

As a qualified and competent gas engineer, you can expect to be inspected as a matter of course at some point within a five-year cycle, whether that’s in-person, in a group inspection or online. When that email arrives and invites you to your inspection, what can you expect and how should you prepare for it?

Inspection is about auditing technical knowledge and competence skills. But Gas Safe Register will also check that you have all the key equipment, tools, gas safety notices and labels you need to carry out your work. You can bring reference materials with you, such as relevant training guides. You should definitely have a current copy of IGEM/G/11, the Gas Industry Unsafe Situations Procedure, and you’ll be expected to know what to do in an unsafe situation.

The key to a successful and straightforward inspection is being prepared for it.

What practical work will I have to do?
It all depends on what work you are showing, but the following are some examples of tests that you may be asked to complete:

  • A visual inspection of the gas installation and appliances
  • A tightness test of the gas installation
  • The working pressure at the outlet of the gas meter
  • Gas rates of the appliances on site
  • The inlet working pressure or operating pressures
  • Flue gas analysis
  • Check adequate ventilation, if required
  • Check flue route and termination
  • Check the safety device/s of the nominated appliance
  • Identifying and reporting of any unsafe situations.

What equipment should I bring?
You should make sure that you have key gas safety equipment with you. The following is an indication but not an exhaustive list and will depend on the work you carry out:

  • A hard copy or digital version of the latest IGEM/ G/11, Gas Industry Unsafe Situations Procedure
  • A fully charged flue gas analyser with an in-date calibration certificate
  • Direct reading CO2 meter (where required)
  • Reference materials
  • Stopwatch
  • Tape measure
  • Caps, meter discs and plugs for the size of gas pipe you are competent to work on
  • Jointing compounds and PTFE tape
  • Flue jointing compound
  • Temporary continuity bonds
  • Smoke matches and smoke pellets
  • Leak detection fluid
  • Warning advice notices and Warning Do Not Use labels
  • Compartment warning labels
  • Electric cross-bonding warning notices.

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