The Combustion Engineering Association launches “I-GAS” - a new qualification for gas fitters working in industry
Published:  26 February, 2016

The Combustion Engineering Association (CEA) has launched its Industrial Gas Operations Accreditation Scheme (I-GAS) qualification for gas fitters working in industry. It is the only formal training and accreditation scheme currently available that is specifically designed for technicians and maintenance staff working with gas in industrial premises.

The CEA explains there are many activities routinely occurring in industrial premises that might require breaking into a gasway for maintenance or repairs for instance, and the currently available training and certification for gas fitters and engineers working on domestic and commercial appliances is not often appropriate for the types of gas equipment commonly found in industry, increasingly including premises where electricity is generated using gas.

Large numbers of maintenance technicians, gas operatives and contractors working in factories may have no formal training in the safe use of gas in industry. Gas is widely used in bakeries and other food processes, metals processing, energy centres, chemical works and manufacturing across a wide range of industrial sites. GasSafe qualifications are not required in factories and the associated training will not be relevant for the types of equipment and sizes of plant involved.

Reg 3 of the ‘Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998’ (GSIUR) says “Gas work for those working at premises that fall outside the scope of the Regulations should only be undertaken by a person who has successfully completed an appropriate full training course followed by assessment of competence”.

The I-GAS qualification has therefore been devised to fill this gap, in collaboration with training providers, manufacturers of combustion equipment, and employers.

Candidates for I-GAS qualifications are expected already to be working as mechanical fitters or installers, maintenance technicians or in other associated industrial activities where they are working around gas fired systems and equipment. They may already have domestic gas qualifications and need to enhance these with an industrial gas qualification, or they may have no formal gas training at all.

In order to prepare candidates for I-GAS accreditation a number of independent and competing organisations offer suitable training courses approved by the CEA. These courses are intended to supplement and confirm existing knowledge and prepare suitable candidates for the various levels of qualification afforded by I-GAS. All courses are a mix of practical assessments and written examinations assessed by independent gas Assessors.

While it is recognised that by attaining I-GAS accreditation the candidate has demonstrated a measure of professional competence on the day of their assessment, the qualification should be viewed only as part of the candidate’s overall training and development programme.

I-GAS Accreditation of itself is not a legal requirement, but it is a test of a person’s competence in relation to their current knowledge and experience at the time their assessment is completed. It is only one possible component that may help an organisation to demonstrate their corporate responsibility to provide suitable training for employees under the Health and Safety at Work Act.

I-GAS is not a substitute for GasSafe qualifications which are still needed for work on gas installations in a wide variety of domestic and commercial premises and other publicly accessible locations such as hospitals.

The CEA is the independent Certification Body responsible for the scope, syllabus and administration of the scheme, and the selection and appointment of Training Providers and Assessors.

Further advice and information can be obtained by emailing: info@cea.org.uk




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