Training company Develop Training has claimed that there are still thousands of gas engineers still not trained to the required F-Gas standards.
Mark Dougall, Director at Develop Training, explained: “Many engineers did not comply with the July 2011 deadline and many are now working illegally.”
“We are worried about this for two reasons - not only could individuals be fined if they don’t gain their qualifications but we may also see a shortage of engineers able to legally undertake important servicing and maintenance work.”
“We realise that many operators who have not yet undertaken the training, may not even be aware of it, and there are also the timing pressures and cost factors.”
Develop Training states that some of the larger companies employing gas engineers are trying to cut costs and corners by training some and not all of their engineers for the F-Gas Certification.
The legislation is part of the EU F-Gas Regulations, the first part of which was introduced in 2007.
Since 2009 any company which employs engineers working under F-Gas Regulations must have a Company Certificate but in July 2011 this was been extended to individuals.
Anyone carrying out service, maintenance, recovery or leak checking on refrigeration equipment covered by the regulations must have completed one of the updated national qualifications.
Develop are still receiving many new enquiries in regards to the qualification as they offer F-Gas Certification, training and assessment courses, Category 1 to 4, which are either City and Guilds or CITB accredited.
The assessment process covers safe handling of refrigerants, pipework and jointing skills, recovery of refrigerants, pressure testing and intrusive and non-intrusive leak testing – and performance of checking systems, dependent upon the level of assessment taken.
Mr Dougall added: “It is really quite shocking how many calls we are receiving from people who are as yet untrained.”