You may be aware that the Department of Health and Human Services has been disconnecting and replacing Vulcan/Pyrox Heritage gas heaters from public housing properties since 2018.
This is because these heaters present a serious risk to tenants’ health.
Statewide, there were 6,000 gas heaters that needed to be disconnected and replaced. Most of this work has now been finalised.
As of July 2019, there were around 170 properties with the Vulcan/Pyrox Heritage gas heaters that still required work.
Of those, approximately 25 per cent have not yet been inspected or disconnected. The remaining 75 per cent have been disconnected, but not yet replaced.
It is very important that these heaters are disconnected and replaced – as they present a serious risk to the health and wellbeing of those who live with them.
The Department has been trying to contact people who are still living with these heaters, to either arrange installation of a new gas heater, or to disconnect an old, unsafe heater.
Sometimes, heaters have not been inspected/disconnected and replaced, because the residents have not responded to attempts to arrange a time to do this.
Because of the danger these heaters pose, staff from the Department will begin sending tenants formal advice that someone from your Housing Office and a contractor will enter your home at a specific date and time to complete the work – regardless of whether or not you are at home. Sometimes this might require the locks on your home to be changed.
To avoid this happening, we recommend that you respond to contact from your Housing Office to arrange a time for the work to occur when you can be at home.
If your home needs to be entered when you are not at home, staff must leave a notice on your door explaining why they have entered the home without you, and providing a fact sheet about what happens next, including how to get your new key if it has been necessary to change a lock.
This entry process applies only to gas heater works – the procedure for other maintenance issues has not changed.
If you believe you have one of the Vulcan/Pyrox Heritage gas heaters, and you have not been contacted by Housing, or if you have any other concerns about your gas heater, we recommend contacting us (1800 015 510 / firstname.lastname@example.org) or your Housing Office.