In light of the country’s energy crisis, with a number of businesses and homes resorting to gas-based solutions, the Department of Employment and Labour in the Free State announced that it will be conducting inspections on Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) installations, storage, filling and exchange sites across the province.
Labour department spokesperson, Cebisa Siyobi, confirmed that the inspections will be led by the department’s Inspection and Enforcement Services branch.
The branch has a mandate is to enhance occupational health and safety, compliance and awareness in the workplace in line with the Occupational Health and Safety Act (Act No .85 of 1993) and Pressure Equipment Regulations, of 2009.
Gas solutions are safe, but precaution needs to be taken
While gas solutions are considered safe, if incorrectly used it is also known to cause extreme mishaps such as fire, explosion and poisonous fumes resulting in fatalities and damage to property.
“This risk must be managed through ensuring that there is requisite compliance from all gas users to prevent potential harm and fatalities,” the labour department said in a statement.
The department’s provincial Chief Inspector, Manelisi Luxande explained: “This initiative seeks to monitor compliance of the Pressure Equipment Regulations, 2009 of Occupational Health and Safety Act – this legislation obligates the manufacturers, importers, sellers, suppliers, installers and end-users of the Liquefied Petroleum Gas Equipment to ensure that the apparatus complies with the applicable South African National Standards.”
Liquefied Petroleum Gas users are urged to ensure that LP Gas equipment designed and manufactured for use in the Republic is conformity assessed and subjected to the requirement set in SANS347, and that the Approved Inspection Authority( AIA) verified manufacturer certificate is available.
They also need to ensure that the equipment is operated and maintained within its design operating parameters.
The labour department has advised that LP Gas Cylinders storage and filling sites must be approved by the local authority. LP Gas cylinders were also to be stored and used in well-ventilated areas and away from flammable material.
Users were also urged to ensure that LP Gas installations are done and maintained by suitably qualified installer who is registered with South African Qualification and Certification Authority Gas.
Compiled by Devina Haripersad