Valley Grove in Charlton
The inspections are carried out every year

Greenwich Council has begun sending engineers into tenants’ homes to check their gas systems once again, and it says it is taking steps to make sure tenants are comfortable with allowing workers into their home.

Annual inspections, which have to be carried out by law, had been suspended when the lockdown was imposed five weeks ago. But tenants have begun to receive letters saying that the services are resuming on government advice.

One tenant who lives in west Greenwich sent their letter to 853, saying: “I’m certain the council are within their legal rights, but it does seem a bit much just at the moment, and is certain to increase anxiety, especially, perhaps, amongst older, more vulnerable people, who don’t need more anxiety in their lives just now.”

Gas service letter
The council says the inspections have to be carried out by law

However, a Greenwich Council spokesperson emphasised that the inspections had be carried out by law. She added: “We’ve provided a phone number for residents to get in touch when they receive their letter if they are self-isolating or have concerns. There is also more information on our website about the changes we’ve made in light of Covid-19 to make sure staff can attend homes safely.”

Measures include asking residents if they are unwell or self-isolating before arranging appointment, asking residents to stay two metres away from the engineer or in another room while the service is carried out, and asking if staff can wash their hands both before the service and before leaving the home. The workers will also carry ID.

About one in five households in the borough rents from the council.


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