Plumbing and drainage

Simpler laws and new safety standards for plumbing and drainage industry

The Queensland Government has made it simpler for plumbers and gasfitters to comply with legislation, passing the Plumbing and Drainage Bill 2018 on 5 September 2018.

Minister for Housing and Public Works Mick de Brenni said the new laws reduced the complexity of the previous Plumbing and Drainage Act 2002 which had been amended by more than 30 separate Bills during the past 15 years, making it hard to work with.

Compliance activities in Toowoomba and Goondiwindi

Compliance site visit.

In March and April, QBCC plumbing investigators joined forces with officers from the QBCC’s Toowoomba Service Centre to conduct compliance audits in Toowoomba, Goondiwindi and surrounding areas.

In Toowoomba, they conducted licence inspections and fire audits at 29 sites and found 52 people carrying out plumbing and drainage work.

One licensee received a warning for directing a fourth year apprentice to carry out plumbing work without direct supervision, which is an offence under Section 120 of the Plumbing and Drainage Act.

Plumbing apprentices get schooled in licensing requirements

Photo of tradesman using a laptop.

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.

New Manager for Plumbing and Pools Investigation Units

Bridget Harding has been appointed as the new Manager for the QBCC’s Plumbing and Pools Investigation Units, after a very competitive recruitment process. Bridget brings a wealth of investigative experience to the role, having worked as an investigator for plumbing and pools, liquor and gaming, and early childhood education. Her most recent position has been as A/Principal Advisor and Team Leader for the QBCC’s Service Trades Unit.

Bridget will commence as Manager, Plumbing and Pools Investigation Units, in the near future.

STC Forum Recap

On 8 February 2018, the Service Trades Council (STC) kicked off their regional outreach program for 2018 with an industry forum in Logan.

The forum was opened by the Minister for Housing and Public Works, the Honourable Mick de Brenni MP, and sponsored by the Department of Housing and Public Works. Other presentations included an overview about the STC, an update from Logan City Council, a quiz about notifiable work and presentations from departmental representatives about the Queensland Building Plan, licensing reviews and other policy matters.

Using a nominated representative on myQBCC

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.

Notifiable work audits

Plumbing and drainage licensees are often curious as to how the QBCC conducts their audits.

When it comes to notifiable work administration audits, there are three audit programs – random, compliance and real estate.

For random audits – plumbing and drainage companies are randomly selected using online searches, industry advertisements, newspapers, contractor licence lists, radio advertising and vehicle advertising.

Frequently asked questions – Licensing requirements for plumbers and drainers

Contractor looking a laptop screen

Here are some frequently asked questions and answers relating to the licensing requirements for plumbers and drainers.

Q: What licences do I need?

A: There is currently some confusion in the plumbing industry about what licences are required for the work they perform.

The basic types of plumbing and drainage licence include:

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