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WorkSafe New Zealand high risk database auditing programme

Energy Safety is part of WorkSafe and conducts a range of audits related to the gas and electricity industries. Part of the audit process may include requesting and reviewing documentation for entries on the high risk database.

These audits are not new. Energy Safety has been auditing a sample of database records and requesting related  Certificates of Compliance (CoC) and Gas Safety Certificates (GSC) produced by certifying gasfitters since the high risk database was established under the Gas (Safety and Measurement) Amendment Regulations 2012.

The relevant legislation requires:

  • A person who issues a gas safety certificate must, on request by WorkSafe (or other party authorised in Regulation 52I (2)) provide a copy of the certificate to the requester within 7 working days after the request.
  • A responsible person must, on request by WorkSafe (or other party authorised in Regulation 52G (4)) provide a copy of the certificate to the requester within 10 working days after the request.

The high risk database audit work enables WorkSafe and other regulators to audit or review high risk records, request (if needed) associated practitioner’s GSCs and CoCs, and conduct site visits. The records can also assist in the event of product failures.

Audits can cover a range of elements, for example:

  • Is the high risk database record correct?
  • Are the forms or templates used correct? - Without all the items mentioned in the regulations being present and correct, the GSC or CoC is invalid.
  • Is the form’s information adequate?
  • Was the high risk database record created within the required timeframe?
  • Was the practitioner registered and licenced at the time of the work?
  • Was the requested documentation supplied within the required timeframe?

From the audits conducted to date we are seeing some common trends, for example:

  • Practitioners’ stating that they relied on manufacturer’s instructions - but then not either attaching a copy of those instructions to the gas certificate, or providing a link to an electronic copy of the instructions.
  • Practitioners not identifying on the CoC the date range the gas fitting was performed, and not listing anyone who worked under their supervision.
    For example - When we see a job that says it was completed in one day we know this record cannot be correct when you look at what was involved - installing two continuous flow water heaters, a 1200 wide space heater, a 900 wide cooker and replacement pipework from the gas meter to the appliances without help. Either the practitioner had help with the install or didn’t do the work in a day.

Our aim is to educate and to ensure that the correct process and paperwork is undertaken in the future. However, if non-compliance is found in our audits, we may take compliance action. Repeated non-compliance may result in an infringement notice (instant fine) or possibly a prosecution.

The Regulations also allow additional information to be added to certificates and a couple of examples we often see are; the date the installation was tested and the actual test results.

Energy Safety has designed a checklist to help you ensure that your certificates comply and a template for practitioners to use if they don’t wish to create their own. These are available on the Energy Safety website free of charge.

All the regulations are available at www.legislation.govt.nz, also free of charge.

Energy Safety - High Hazards & Specialist Services
WorkSafe New Zealand