Comparing registration numbers between March 2021 to March 2022, there has been an increase in registered gas practitioners according to the South African Qualification and Certification Committee for Gas (SAQQC Gas). That is excellent news! For the everyday South African who benefits from gas products as well as the workers maintaining and installing gas systems, it means a safer year with higher levels of competency and compliancy in the gas industry.
SAQCC Gas is always striving for more awareness on gas-work competency and safety. By registering as a gas practitioner, you are playing a crucial part in ensuring that every worker goes home safe at the end of each workday. For SAQCC Gas, part of achieving that goal is by providing members with the opportunity to have the training and competency they need to remain safe on the job and support the safety of those with whom they work. ‘’Involving industry members in advisory roles for the Safety and Technical Advisory Council (STAC) is inspirational and collaborative. STAC ensures a platform for sound debate and advice, resulting in improved safety and best practices across most gas disciplines within industry. Successes are imminent especially embracing emerging markets,’’ says Roy Lubbe, Chairman of the Southern African Gas Association (SAGA), which established STAC and is also one of the four member associations of SAQCC Gas.
It is equally important for consumers utilising various gas products whether in commercial, industrial or specialised capacities to be vigilant about compliancy and make use of registered gas practitioners. For instance, South African homeowners should not view Certificates of Conformity (CoCs) as indefinitely valid. Gas is very well regulated and often updated, therefore making it a safer energy choice. This means responsible homeowners should have their gas appliances inspected on a yearly basis at minimum to avoid being caught by surprise should they need to sell the property or if there is a costly fault due to lack of maintenance.
It’s the community of consumers and gas practitioners working together to constantly build and improve the gas industry in South Africa. Each of the four associations emphasise that anyone can report an incident where an installation does not conform to current regulations. Work done by unregistered persons is illegal and potentially extremely dangerous as it can result in serious injury or even death. Registered gas practitioners have the necessary experience, competency, equipment and knowledge to do the work safely the first time. Never settle for quick and cheap installations that compromise on your safety. Insurance companies may not cover fire or public liability claims caused by non-registered persons as the gas installations will be deemed illegal.