This guidance is designed to provide a recognised framework for industry that enables businesses to sustain the management and supervisory technical competences required to carry out their work and assist in achieving business objectives.
The term ''competent person'' occurs frequently in UK safety regulations and clarification on the definition of competence has been established through case law.
This guidance is for those working in the transmission, storage and distribution sectors of the gas industry and includes natural gas, Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) and Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) installations but could be applied to other parts of the industry if required.
Gas transportation is a high hazard industry and as a consequence, is more heavily regulated than other utilities and construction industries. Regulations impose explicit duties on Gas Transporters (GTs) to ensure that people are competent to carry out a range of work. Specific obligations included within UK safety regulations have recently been reinforced by changes in corporate accountability for safety management.
Technical capability is essential for gas transportation businesses to discharge these duties and meet their obligations to shippers, gas consumers, shareholders and members of the public.
All recognised management system standards include requirements for training or competence. Nevertheless, there are no recognised standards for competence management systems and the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) considers that competence is a recurring problem with certification of management systems of all types.
This guidance is for all sectors of the gas industry providing practical guidance to support the Gas Safety (Management) Regulations (GS(M)R), Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations (GS(I&U)R) and the Pipelines Safety Regulations (PSR).
This guidance also supports engineers in carrying out their work in achieving their company's business objectives.
This guidance represents the basis of best practice for industry, including but not limited to gas transmission and storage companies, gas distribution network companies, independent GTs, LNG storage and transmission companies, LPG storage, transmission and distribution companies, the nominated contractor, Health and Safety Executive (HSE), Office of Gas and Energy Markets (Ofgem) and individuals who are or aspire to be employees in the industry.
The relevant parts of this guidance may be cited in a Gas Transporter's (GT's) Safety Case.
The competence framework is intended to provide a means for companies to determine competence requirements for particular roles and assess whether individual employees meet those requirements. The competence framework may also be used by individual employees or those aspiring to roles in the industry to understand and demonstrate the relevant competence.