In Australia lead is used in the manufacture of some plumbing products, such as brass fittings. These products are widely used in drinking water systems in homes and commercial and industrial buildings. Lead can be released from some brass plumbing fittings, either as small particles or through dissolving into the drinking water, particularly where the water has been sitting in contact with these brass plumbing products for long periods.
A joint investigation by the QBCC and Queensland Health has revealed that home owners are often not aware that hot water systems need to be serviced regularly.
Plumbers should remind home owners that it is generally recommended for hot water systems to be serviced by an appropriately licensed individual. Where the source water for the system is not a potable, reticulated source, the system may need to be serviced more frequently.
Under the Plumbing and Drainage Act 2002 (PD Act), in order to direct or supervise the performance of work, a supervising licensee must ensure they hold the appropriate licence for the work, including any endorsements.
We recently wrapped up the Notifiable Work (NW) Communication Campaign, with the aim of increasing the number of Form 4/4As lodged online and raising awareness of the NW scheme, both within the industry and with home owners.
The campaign ran from October 2017 to February 2018 and the results are in:
Apprentices must get their licence as soon as they complete their apprenticeship in order to keep carrying out plumbing and drainage work.
Last month, our Plumbing Occupational Licensing Team spoke to apprentices in the last year of their Certificate III in Plumbing at the Service Trades College in Brisbane about the QBCC’s requirements for provisional, open and trade contractor licensing.
Our QBCC Team will be visiting many more apprentices between now and the end of the year to remind them to get a licence when they finish their training.
You can now nominate someone to lodge and search for Form 4/4As for notifiable plumbing and drainage work on your behalf. This person is your ‘nominated representative’.
Your nominated representative does not require a QBCC licence number, but they do need to have a myQBCC account. As the licensee, you must also give your nominated representative the appropriate permissions under your licence details to lodge Form 4s on your behalf.
The QBCC has recently identified issues relating to the use of Polyethylene (PE) pipes in potable water systems, primarily related to chemicals such as hydrocarbons or pesticides infiltrating the pipes.
The key issues causing a health and safety concern are current storage methods of PE pipes, and particular installation methods which may increase the risk of permeation of chemicals into the pipes and into drinking water supply.