This month (March 2018), Gas Safe Register has withdrawn Edition 7.1 of The Gas Industry Unsafe Situations Procedure (GUISP), setting out procedures for visual risk assessments of gas appliances. It has been replaced by a new document published by the Institute of Gas Engineers and Managers (IGEM) called IGEM/G/11.
The new document sets out the procedures for use by Gas Safe Registered businesses and engineers when they are faced with unsafe situations in domestic and non-domestic premises, whether natural gas or liquefied petroleum gas (LPG).
This Procedure has been drawn up in order to assist competent engineers meet their legal duties in accordance with the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 (GSIUR) and associated Approved Code of Practice and Guidance. Its aim is to help gas engineers identify gas equipment that presents a danger and further clarify the actions that should be taken to prevent accidents and risks to safety.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) supports the new Procedure, which will assist the industry in maintaining a consistent approach to the risk assessment of gas installations.
The new IGEM/G/11
In summary, there have only been minor revisions to the document’s forerunner. The layout is different, to bring it into line with other IGEM publications and the wording has altered slightly to fit IGEM’s house-style.
Table One, which gives guidance on the categorisation of a comprehensive list of situations as either AR – ‘At Risk’ or ID ‘Immediately Dangerous’, has been updated to make it clearer.
Appendix 5, which deals with Visual Risk Assessment, has been changed in order to give more guidance on legal requirements and sets out the recommended minimum checks to enable compliance with HSWA and GSIUR.
The document makes it clear that the primary responsibility for compliance rests with the employer, stressing the fact that when certain employees, for example “competent engineers”, are allowed to exercise their professional judgment this does not allow abrogate the employer’s primary responsibilities. The Procedure states that employers must:
- have done everything to ensure, as far as is reasonably practicable, that there are no better protective measures.
- have systems and procedures in place to ensure that the exercise of professional judgment by “competent engineers” is subject to appropriate monitoring and review.
- not require employees to undertake tasks beyond their competence. There should be written procedures defining the extent to which “competent engineers” can exercise their judgement. When asked to undertake tasks which deviate from this, they should refer the matter for higher review.
This Procedure is in effect a ‘live’ document and will be revised periodically as new information/guidance is developed. To ensure that you keep up-to-date with the current requirements of the Procedure visit: http://igem.org.uk
The priority for gas engineers when encountering an unsafe situation is to safeguard life and property. It is essential that they are able to identify gas equipment which presents a danger and know how to deal with it.
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