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Joshua
Joshua, Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 30014
Experience:  LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice
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After over 10 years continuous supply of Calor gas cylinders

Customer Question

After over 10 years continuous supply of Calor gas cylinders down straight steps to our property Calor have suddenly ceased supply on safety grounds, without notice. The siting of the cylinders was their decison originally. We cannot reasonably change hot water and our oven immediately or before Christmas should we run out of gas. What remedy do we have?
JA: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: Reedham Norfolk NR13 3TQ
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: We requested an immediate on site meeting with the local operations Manager. He said he would decide by tomorrow if we could get by with smaller cylinders or alternatively he would try to find us another supplier.We wish to be prepared for his call in advance as surely not giving notice constitutes breach of an implied contract of supply of an essential service? They simply left a note through the door instead of making the expected delivery of two 47 kg cylinders as is customary.
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: Fortunately we changed our central heating to electric earlier this year due to an untraceable water leak within our property. We were advised to leave the oven and hot water with gas supply so as not to exceed the 100 amp supply from UK Power.
Submitted: 17 days ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Joshua replied 17 days ago.

Hello and thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will be very pleased to assist you. I'm a practising lawyer in England with over 15 years’ experience. Please be aware that although I will endeavour to reply to you promptly, I am also in full time private practice and so I may not be available to respond immediately and it may also take me a few minutes to prepare a reply. The site will notify you as soon as I respond. I look forward to working with you to answer your question fully.

  1. I am very sorry to read of the above and I imagine how frustrating it must be. I will certainly try to clarify the position for you.
  2. did you have any minimum contract with your current supplier?

May I confirm if there are any other suppliers in your area that supply bottled gas please?

Customer: replied 17 days ago.
No written contract as far as I am aware. supply began in 2005 to a bulk gas tank. Calor changed this to cylinders circa 2010 at a site meeting as they were concerned about the positioning of the tank. They have delivered cylinders ever since until last week when they left a note through the door saying delivery was declined due to the access by steps. The driver did not knock on the door although my wife was at home. She saw the driver go past the window but thought he was posting the usual delivery note through the letterbox.
Customer: replied 17 days ago.
Joshua, Please phone this afternoon***********as I have to go out until 1pm. Thank You, ***** *****
Customer: replied 17 days ago.
You asked if there were any other suppliers. There are two. As mentioned the Calor operations Managers said in our meeting on Monday he would contact them to see if they would take us on and get back to us by the end of the week to let us know the position. In case of a negative response I need to be prepared with an appropriate reply when he phones..
Expert:  Joshua replied 17 days ago.

thank you. Unfortunately, Calor does not have any statutory obligation to supply and accordingly, its obligations are governed only by the contract that exists between you. accordingly, the starting point would be to ascertain whether there is any minimum term associated with the supply agreement. Usually these agreements will be set out on the basis that they have a minimum term of supply and if this is the case, then the company will have a continuing obligation to supply unless they can show that you are in breach of the agreement. One of their terms is that you agree to comply with the industry code of practice which includes safety provisions in terms of the location and siting of cylinders. Accordingly, it may be that if they can show that the siting of the canisters is not in compliance with the code of practice, they may be able to terminate the agreement on this basis. If this is the case, then it is possible of course that other suppliers may be similarly concerned about supply leaving you any with an option of relocating the cylinders.

In the first instance, one simple solution may be to contact alternative suppliers to ask them for quotations and a site visit to see if you can secure an alternative supply. If this is not possible, then you will need to consider relocating the solicitors to comply with the relevant code of practice and Calor will be able to advise you in this respect in terms of their requirements

Customer: replied 17 days ago.
As this is an elevated site there is no alternative place for the cylindes. They chose the siting. I do not recall a written contract.They deliver then invoice and take payment by direct debit. Surely some notice must be given even for an implied contract.
Expert:  Joshua replied 17 days ago.

Thank you. Do you have evidence that the site was advised upon by Calor please?

Customer: replied 17 days ago.
The Manager who came to see us on Monday remembered the change from bulk tank being at their instigation. The previous delivery was on 21september with no mention of any issues.
Expert:  Joshua replied 17 days ago.

thank you. if you can evidence that the tanks were located in the particular area they were based upon the advice received from the company, then, if they have to be removed and moved to a new location, though from what you say, options may be limited in this respect, or alternatively, some other form of facility provided to provide for safe delivery of gas, then you may be able to sustain a claim against the company on grounds of loss for negligent advice in this respect. Of course from what you say, you do not have any written evidence do not think in respect of this advice and therefore unless they are prepared to acknowledge that they provided you with this advice, it may be your word against the company's which would not be ideal.

Customer: replied 17 days ago.
I will get acknowledgement of the original advice from Mr Valentine, the sales manager present at the site meeting.It may be relevant to mention that we had a letter dated 5 October 2021 concerning safety issues for their staff. This referred to updated regulations for OPSO regulators to be fitted or supply would cease from 31 March 2022
This had already been done. There was no mention of the steps being an issue.
Expert:  Joshua replied 17 days ago.

Thank you. it seems to me, you should consider putting these points to the company and advise that you would like to find a way of resolving this matter amicably for given that the siting of the tanks was based upon advice received from the company, you may need to consider making a claim in respect of the costs of any alterations that are required or other losses you suffer if the advice provided was faulty on grounds of breach of contract

Customer: replied 17 days ago.
Thanks.I will proceed on that basis.
Expert:  Joshua replied 17 days ago.

I'm glad the above answers all your questions for now. If you have any follow up questions please revert to me.

Customer: replied 16 days ago.
I am glad to say that Calor have resolved matters by finding an alternative local supplier, who have already been in contact to arrange a gas delivery. Thank you for your advice and assistance.
Expert:  Joshua replied 15 days ago.

That is good news. I hoped this would be the most obvious solution to the issue.

Thank you again for visiting JustAnswer and see you again in the future I hope.

Expert:  Joshua replied 15 days ago.

Thank you again for visiting JustAnswer and see you again in the future I hope.