A GAS installer has been given a suspended prison sentence for carrying out illegal and dangerous work at a home in Brightlingsea.

William Saint was hired to install a gas fired boiler to heat a swimming pool at a home in Hall Cut Road, on 1 April 2013.

But he was not registered with Gas Safe Register - as UK law requires.

Despite making several attempts at installing the boiler, it failed to operate successfully and was deemed to be immediately dangerous when it was later inspected by British Gas.

Colchester Magistrates’ Court heard despite receiving advice from a Gas Safe Register engineer, Saint failed to rectify all of the faults.

The installation was classed as ‘at risk’ by Gas Safe Register and the matter was passed to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), who prosecuted Saint for safety failings.

Saint, 75, of Cherry Blossom Lane, Cold Norton, Chelmsford, was given a four-month prison sentence, suspended for 12 months, as well as 150 hours of unpaid community work after being found guilty of three separate breaches of the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998.

He was also ordered to pay costs of £850.

After the case, HSE Inspector Vicky Fletcher said: “William Saint was well aware that he should be registered with Gas Safe Register in order to carry out gas work, yet he still chose to flout the law.

“People can die as a result of carbon monoxide poisoning and gas explosions. It is therefore vital that only registered gas engineers, who are trained and competent, work on gas appliances and fittings.”