When it comes to health and safety, it is not just the community and the health and safety department that is responsible for it. Every individual is responsible for the health and safety of our environment, especially in our homes. One of the first steps to ensuring health in a home is taking care of the main foundation in a home, the plumbing system. Plumbing systems ensure the distribution and use of drinkable water and the removal of waterborne wastes. Without a fully functioning system, we would live in unsanitary and toxic environments.
Therefore, you need a qualified and even better, a licenced plumber to take care of your home. Licenced plumbers are crucial because they can issue the client with a document called the Certificate of Compliance (COC). A COC ensures that Licensed plumbers comply with all regulatory installation requirements and are held accountable for the work they deliver. Moreover, it enables the plumber to inform you about the pre-existing problems in your plumbing system, in the plumbing environment, these are called non-compliances. These non-compliances are issued in the form of a notice.
At this point, you might ask yourself, why is it important to issue a non-compliance notice? The answer is simple, it is a requirement of the Consumer Protection Act. It is a document that informs you, the client of any and/or potential dangers and performance issues that are or may arise from the existing installation. But you, the client have a responsibility in this process. As mentioned in the introduction, you, as an individual are also responsible for your health and safety. Here is what to know as a client:
- First and foremost, you are responsible for the plumbing in your home. The plumber, much like a doctor, will inform you of pre-existing problems but it is fully your responsibility to ensure that those problems are fixed. Hiring a licenced and trusted plumber is the first step in this. (search for a licenced plumber here)
- A licenced plumber arrives on site/ at your house or office.
- The plumber evaluates/inspects the installation or plumbing system.
- The plumber informs the homeowner in writing of any pre-existing non-compliances with their home’s plumbing system
- The homeowner, as the responsible party, will need to make an informed decision on what to do – to rectify/improve the plumbing or not
*NB: The PIRB recommends that homeowners always improve their home’s plumbing, to avoid headaches and to protect their families from toxic bacteria and dangers.
- If the work done is part of an insurance claim, the homeowner should verify with their insurer on what they are paying for and whether or not their payments include plumbing rectifications.
Ultimately, it takes more than the plumber to maintain the sanitation of our environment. According to ICL’s (Israel Chemicals Ltd.) safety principles, Health and safety require us to stay committed and engaged, manage risk and continuously learn. Understanding the processes that govern our plumbing system is a great introduction to maintaining a safe environment for you and your family.
Written by Naomi Bango