No5’s Pole appears for prosecution in case against negligent gas fitter

Tim Pole from No5 Chambers has appeared for the prosecution in a case that saw Steve Colson plead guilty to four offences of contravening the Health and Safety Act 1974 after falsely claiming he was a qualified gas fitter.

Colson was contracted by the Tingay family in 2010 to move their boiler at their home in Ashover. Nazia and Neil Tingay and their teenage daughter started to feel ill and had British Gas inspectors look at the boiler, which was found to be unsafe.

Pole, prosecuting, said Colson falsely claimed he was a qualified gas fitter. While working on the Tingays’ bathroom, he said he would be able to move their boiler, but it was fitted in such a way that fumes could not be dispersed and it was impossible for flue products to exit and fresh air to enter. Pole explained that this could have led to a build-up of lethal carbon monoxide fumes and potentially an explosion.

At Derby Crown Court, Judge David Pugsley said Colson showed a ‘cynical, callous and reckless disregard for other people’ and sentenced him to two months in prison and ordered him to pay £1,000 costs.