In March last year, there was a fire in the gas pipe that supplied the hob and a Gas Safe registered engineer visited the property to inspect the pipe. He found compression joints on the installation were weeping LPG and reported the incident to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), which launched its own investigation that found Rowe was not on the Gas Safe Register, or its predecessor CORGI.
HSE inspector Simon Jones explained that the work posed a serious threat of fire and explosion. He said: ‘Mr Rowe should not have been carrying out work on gas appliances because he is not qualified or competent to do so. His substandard work put the lives of other people at risk. Anyone who works on gas fittings and is not Gas Safe registered is working illegally.’
Rowe appeared at Truro Magistrates’ Court on 7 February and pleaded guilty to breaching reg.3(3) of the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998, for carrying out illegal gas work, and s3(2) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, for putting others at risk through the substandard work. He was fined a total of £2,000 and ordered to pay £1,770 in costs, plus £250 compensation to the homeowner.