LPG Gas Check For Caravan?

by Sharon
(Newcastle)

Hi All,

Hope someone can help. I'll try and keep it brief.
I started a business last year running a tea room from a 1972 caravan. I am based in our local park at weekends and have permission from the council to be there. No mention of a Gas safety check.

However I have applied to go to a local music festival (different council)in the summer and they require proof of Gas Safety. I finally managed to find someone to come and do the check.

They came this morning and have stuck a sticker on saying it's not safe to use. They are quoting £500 plus VAT, plus call out charge, plus issue of certificate (so about £650 in total).

All I do is boil a kettle every half an hour. I don't have the funds (have been off all winter and this weekend was supposed to be my first week back) so don't know what I am going to do? The only appliance I have is the fitted gas stove.

Does this sound like a rip off?

Could I have the gas tapped off so I cant use it anymore, and then by a small camping gas stove and small gas bottle and boil my kettles that way? Would I need the same safety checks??? Or if I would I presume I wouldn't need all the work doing as all the pipework etc would be null and void?

Sorry didn't keep it that short!
Thanks in advance

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Apr 03, 2014
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LPG Gas Check For Caravan?
by: Brian

Hello Sharon,

Hse catering advice leaflet 23 (CAIS23) offers the primary guidance, the summary of which is that all catering businesses are required to have an annual gas safety check.

Local authorities are the enforcing agency, if your local authority hasn't asked for evidence of gas safety they have not fully complied with the HSE's requirements, in the event of an insurance claim you may have not been paid out due to non compliance.

The prices you have been quoted, on the face of it seem expensive.

The only way to avoid a gas safety check is not to use gas in any form.

The problem I have found in the past with caravans is; the gas storage locker regulations are different between a caravan and a commercial mobile catering unit. Caterers use larger gas bottles than leisure caravaners , it is not acceptable to lie bottles down for storage, nor are you allowed to have gas bottles located inside the unit.

The storage locker must also be fire protected and ventilated. If you do not have a storage locker, gas bottles must be transported in accordance with the hazardous materials regulations (in an open backed vehicle etc).

Caravan regulations state the gas used must be 5kg butane bottles, which are impractical for caterers generally, uneconomic having a small quantity of gas and liable to freezing on cool days.

With a 40 year old caravan, any original equipment will not be CE marked and not fit for purpose. If unmodified it is likely to have other gas appliances not related to catering which must work safely, the excuse 'I don't use that anymore' is not valid, it must either work safely, be cut off, and or removed. Ventilation and gas storage must comply with the relevant standard for mobile catering (UKLPG code of practice 24 part 3). Pipework must be copper or steel, not rubber hose inside the catering area.

I suggest you approach a reputable catering trailer manufacturer for a quote, this is their busy season however. If you require a second opinion on what work is required you are welcome to send me some photos to Brian@lpgservices.co.uk, I will try to give further guidance.

Probably not the answer you were looking for, but that's your position with regulation compliance.

Thanks,
Brian

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