Plumbing, Gasfitting and Drainage Community | Plumbers NZ

Not to Forget => Central Heating and Underfloor Heating => Topic started by: Badger on May 17, 2014, 02:42:35 PM


Title: legionnaire's risk - Central Heating
Post by: Badger on May 17, 2014, 02:42:35 PM
A question......

Please see attached a schematic of how I watched my clown old boss plumb out a guys house for central heating and hot water, I told the owner how wrong it was and he wasn't interested.

When I asked my old boss for a technical drawing, because everything I was witnessing was totally against all I had learnt about central heating, he said " you don't need one....just use poker face".....I nearly fell over when he said it....

I have told the Board every autumn because the Thermostatic Valves are opening and the stagnant water is being released from the rads. I have heard that the rads are failing already due to the constant new water entering the ring main, with fresh oxygen to make the corrosion more aggressive.... and not forgetting feeding the bugs. Showers atomise the water making the bugs more easily inhaled.

The Board won't look at it, I have even made a complaint...........the Board as far as I am aware have done nothing......but I suppose if you can get away with blowing someone up, you can get way with a legionnaire's risk.

Is anyone else out there who has some experience with central heating/ring mains got any feed back for this system, I believe it to be highly dangerous, the Board apparently have no problem with it, judging by their lack of action. I have been told by Max Pederson that he reads this forum. Perhaps they need some up-skilling on potable and non potable water and hoe the two should never ever meet or be cross contaminated.
Title: Re: legionnaire's risk
Post by: Rodza1 on May 17, 2014, 09:57:28 PM
Im no expert but clearly its a cross connected system. Going by the boards history and how things work if anything ever happens and someone became ill or died your old boss would probably tell his friends at the board that it was you who did the install and they might prosecute again. Your old boss sounds far worse than even the worst diy'er ive met. Wouldnt put it past them. Wouldnt put anything past them these days.

It is a good example of how they dont really uphold "the Act", well only when they feel like it.... if something goes wrong they will deny all accountability of knowing this problem existed just like the last time.
Title: Re: legionnaire's risk
Post by: Badger on May 18, 2014, 08:04:56 AM
It is signed off by my old boss months after I left mate, it wasn't until he started adding hot water outlets that I realised what he was up to. That's when I asked for the tech drawing and he told me to use poker face.
Title: Re: legionnaire's risk
Post by: Badger on May 18, 2014, 08:14:41 AM
I left very soon after he said this. And as soon as I left I saw work supposedly signed off by me, work I hadn't done. I tried to tell the Board as soon as this happened and was fobbed off for 6 years......then when a guy nearly died in an explosion the Board went after me. Hiding evidence and telling lies.

Mate they ever think of going after me ever again, I will find it very hard to keep my calm.
Title: Re: legionnaire's risk
Post by: Rodza1 on May 18, 2014, 08:51:02 AM
Your a better man than me badger. I'd be looking for payback 
Title: Re: legionnaire's risk
Post by: Badger on May 18, 2014, 10:15:04 AM
Mate all I have ever wanted is to prevent people getting hurt, that's all. My emails over the last decade show this, believe me there are a lot, sent to many people.

I told the guy how f****ed up his system was, but he wasn't interested, think he said something like I don't drink the hot water. But what happens when this guy sells this house and someone moves in and starts showering their kids in this water, not knowing where the water has been for six months. It just wrong to gamble with peoples lives like this.

If there is one system like this how many others are there? He could have done dozens like this. They pontificate about looking after the safety of the public.....really??

I had some other things happening in my life during this time too, my eldest was expected and we had just bought our first house and had a big mortgage, believe me leaving Allgas and going out on my own wasn't an easy choice, then my boy had two major operations and my mother fell ill and was dumped on my doorstep by my old man. Then the chipshop went up. If they think I am going away they are thicker than I thought, what don't kill you makes you stronger. We all have snapping points mate.
Title: Re: legionnaire's risk
Post by: bowtieboy on May 18, 2014, 07:22:22 PM
That is one seriously dangerous system Badger, the owners should be made aware !
 No way is that system safe, or compliant, and why have the board not taken action?
Talk to rinnai and suggest that they send a letter to the owners of there water heater and warn that Rinnai will not be held responsible for any illness cause by a poor installation of there product !!!!!
Title: Re: legionnaire's risk
Post by: Badger on May 18, 2014, 09:50:36 PM
I have told the owner and I have told the Board, no one gives a shit, I have told MPs and left messages at the TA.

You got to ask why this guy, who installed this system, got gifted a craftsman's licence with no apprenticeship, all the evidence at the hearing pointing to him FOR A BLOODY EXPLOSION, he actually faced a charge for the explosion....but it disappeared without any hearing or trial.......and the Board do nothing about this....I have been warning about this system for years.

Corruption at the risk to the publics safety......they got to go, it needs looking at.

Why is this guy so untouchable? Any and all who have sheltered him needs to go, we need a public you local MP.

If the public knew half the Board would be gone tomorrow........exposure, is the only way, believe me I have tried everything else.
Title: Re: legionnaire's risk
Post by: Rodza1 on May 18, 2014, 10:04:41 PM
If you didn't work on it and even the owner doesnt give a shit either, if it blows up in his face then serves him right for being a f**kwit about it??

If something did happen the board would be ducking for cover or looking for someone to prosecute to save face which would make them look even more incompetent than they already are which is good for us again.

Sounds to me like you have done all you can do badge, besides offering to fix it for free to clear your mind?

If thats not an option I say to hell with it. You've done your job by informing the owner, telling your s**thead boss
your not happy about it, you've told the board, what else can you be reasonably be expected to do??
Title: Re: legionnaire's risk
Post by: Badger on May 18, 2014, 10:26:21 PM
I even told the coroner, I can barely feed my own family mate let alone fix it for free, the whole place needs re-plumbing, my opinion it hould be condemned, not fit for habitation.

Letter sent to coroner and the Board below.

Coroners Carla na Nagara, Tim Scott
Covering: Hawera, Levin, Kaikoura, Marlborough, Marton, Motueka, Nelson, New Plymouth, Ohakune, Palmerston North, Taihape, Taumaranui, Wanganui, Waverley

Tel (06) 350 0083
Fax (06) 350 0084

Level 3, The Square Centre
478 Main Street
DX Box PX1000
Palmerston North



Dear Coroners office,


I am most sincerely sorry for bothering you with this, as I am sure you are all very busy and your time is of a premium. I assure you I do not do this lightly.


Please find attached a copy of a schematic for a badly installed central heating system. I am terrified by the risk of legionnaireís disease. As I understand it, the legionella bug grows best at between 25 and 45 deg C and is more easily inhaled when it is present in atomised water, such as water from a domestic shower.


As far as I know this system shuts off the radiators with thermostatically controlled valves, off a ring main. This ring main is heated by a califontÖ.the hot water outlets come off this ring main !!!!! with no isolation/separation of this stagnant water from the potable hot water outlets, including the shower.


As these TRVís open for winter, the stagnant water (stagnating for up to 9 months) will rejoin the hot water circuit and come out of all the hot water outlets, including the shower where the water will be dispersed and potentially atomised to finer, more easily inhaled droplets. We have had a warm summer and the weather is now becoming cooler.


Please can you check your cases for any pneumonia outbreaks. Specifically from the Atatwhai area in Nelson, address of Matuku Pl, a man called Mr Kraak, an elderly Dutch gentleman (I did try to warn him at the beginning of the install but he didnít want to know).


If you havenít had any cases please can you note the address and be aware of such, just in case any thing of concern comes up. There is always the risk that the man responsible for installing this system, the man being protected by the Board, has installed other central heating systems in a similar manner, and a review of other pneumonia cases where this man worked might be prudent. People have a signature way of putting things together.


I have numerous times, over many years tried to get the Plumbers Board to look into it. They are not even the ambulance at the bottom of the cliff, more a kin to a hearse. Legionnairesí will strike regardless of who you know at the Board.


You may remember the explosion in Milton Street in Nelson, the Board framed me for that. Made me the scape goat and protected the person who all the evidence pointed to, it is the same person who installed and certified this dire C/H system. It appears we have a Plumbers Board who are prepared to protect a ďmateĒ at the risk of the publicís health and safety. Please see attached examples of correspondence, I apologise for the terse language in the latter one sent but I am very frustrated with this corrupt Plumbers Board.


I am happy to provide more information if required (I have a huge amount). Again, I am so sorry to bother you with this but I am at my wits end to get someone to look at this. I have copied in others for clarity and transparency for them and is no reflection on your office, I also apologise for this.


If the Board were to honour their responsibilities then I would not have to contact you, I assure you it is as a last ditch effort to not to have to actually call on your services.


I have attached a submission made by me to a Parliament Select committee for some more background. My submission is more specifically about the explosion, but it gives an idea of the level of cover up.


If I can clarify or answer any questions please donít hesitate to ask, again I am sorry to bother you.



Title: Re: legionnaire's risk
Post by: Grant Bourke on May 21, 2014, 11:17:22 AM
The system drawn is highly unlikely to be able to demonstrate compliance with the Building code clauses G12.3.1 / G12.3.2 / G12.2.3 / possibly G12.3.9.
The infinity does have a pressure relief valve so you could argue at a pinch that it isnt an explosion hazard (it obviously isn't designed for this type of duty).
Your best bet would be to lay a complaint with the local territorial authority.
If the water heater was newly installed to this house then there probably should have been a building consent which I suspect there isn't. If the local body don't do anything about it then the Building Act provides for a complaint to be laid against the authority.
Word of warning though, certainly under the current building act if you installed this system as a licensed practitioner you are somewhat in the gun for it whether or not you were handed a drawing for it by someone else - especially as you appeared to be aware something wasn't right.

Title: Re: legionnaire's risk - Central Heating
Post by: Badger on May 22, 2014, 11:22:47 PM
Grant this is how I saw my old boss start the system, I had nothing else to do with it, I left even before the pre pipe was any where near completed and I didn't touch it after I saw what he was up to and had made the comment about using poker face, he signed it off months after my leaving his employ.

I have tried to get it looked at for years, same as I did the dodgy certs covering dodgy work for 6 years before an explosion that these goons later framed me for.

Title: Re: legionnaire's risk - Central Heating
Post by: Badger on May 22, 2014, 11:33:55 PM
My old apprentice, weeks and weeks after I left Allgas, was  told to drop the crimping tool around to this address by my old boss.....he left it and ran away.....the idiot, my old boss, was running the unit with the gas live, with none of the gas line crimped and it wreaked of gas.

My old boss finished this system after I told him how wrong it was at the beginning....I told the Board by phone and later by email many times. I'm pretty sure that it has a building consent because the owner told me, when I tried to warn him about the stagnant water, that he was going to split the dwelling into two after got the consent, because it was cheaper.

I am pretty sure too that my old boss was, at this time, the local Rinnai service agent to boot as well.
Title: Re: legionnaire's risk - Central Heating
Post by: Badger on May 22, 2014, 11:41:50 PM
I should clarify that this was a new build, the system was being installed as it was built.
Title: Re: legionnaire's risk - Central Heating
Post by: Grant Bourke on May 23, 2014, 04:26:37 PM
My suggestion would be to write a short simple letter (letter not email) to the territorial authority as they are responsible for building code compliance, not the PGDB. I would simply state you believe it doesn't comply with the building code clauses I quoted earlier. Trouble is you might never know if they have done anything about it as you probably aren't a party to it. If you really wanted to you could check the property file held by the council for the address to see if they had written and then lay a complaint with DBH if they did nothing. (And you could be bothered - which I couldn't).

"Patience is what we have when there are too many witnesses."
Title: Re: legionnaire's risk - Central Heating
Post by: Badger on May 24, 2014, 09:13:39 AM

So Grant..........."the territorial authority as they are responsible for building code compliance, not the PGDB".....I agree, but aren't the Plumbers Board responsible for plumbing?
Title: Re: legionnaire's risk - Central Heating
Post by: integrated on May 24, 2014, 03:48:20 PM
maybe the ministry of health also?
Title: Re: legionnaire's risk - Central Heating
Post by: Badger on May 26, 2014, 06:09:07 PM
"Patience is what we have when there are too many witnesses."

Hey Grant, bit ominous mate? What's all that about?

How well do you know Tony Hammond and Stephen Parker?
Title: Re: legionnaire's risk - Central Heating
Post by: Grant Bourke on May 27, 2014, 11:32:01 AM
The purpose of the PGDB act is to ensure competency and regulate persons carry out PG&D.

This is why when you ring them up and ask for some help about what is and isn't OK in terms of physical construction they generally aren't able to help you definitively. In theory if there was something a bit grey in the building code or compliance documents (again in terms of physical construction) they would have to do the same as all the rest of us and apply for a determination from DBH.

As an aside I think it would be really good if the PGDB did have some budget each year to seek determinations where they find practitioners have common frequently asked questions. But of course the money for this in the end would come from licence fees.

I didn't intend to cause any offense with the "Patience is what we have when there are too many witnesses" line. I saw it in a shop window, found it amusing, and thought it particularly applicable to dealing with teenagers. But perhaps also when you have a customer looking over your shoulder.

I am not sure why you ask but I did know Tony Hammond and Stephen Parker on a professional level when they worked in the industry.

Title: Re: legionnaire's risk - Central Heating
Post by: Badger on May 27, 2014, 09:30:24 PM
I didn't ask the Board for any technical clarification, I have been telling them about a specific dangerous installation for years, I have even complained about it. I thought it was their job to act on complaints. I thought that was what they were there for.

Hey no offence taken with the quote, just thought it an odd line for this forum.