Friday, 19th April 2019


In order for all homes and businesses to have working gas supplies and heating, a complex underground network of gas lines needs to be installed and maintained. This is the job of a gas network operative. They work in the installation and maintenance of gas networks, linking homes and businesses with major gas suppliers, ensuring it is safe and working correctly.

There are four main occupations in this area of the gas work industry:

  • Operatives - assistants to a team leader (either main layer or service layer)
  • Main layer - main gas pipe work
  • Service layer - pipe work from a main gas pipe to smaller meters
  • Technician - controls resources and involved with complex technical jobs

Generally, gas network operatives will work to maintain the current gas networks in their area, in small teams, drilling and digging up road surfaces and servicing the networks. They may also connect major gas lines to smaller neighbourhoods, or new-build homes.

Typical tasks and daily duties of a gas network operative might include the following:

  • Digging holes by hand or using drilling equipment
  • Laying and repairing pipes and mains
  • Sticking to detail maps and diagrams about where to dig and service
  • Creating links between gas suppliers and homes and businesses
  • Installing and checking gas pressure control equipment
  • Replacing road surfaces after gas work, and filling holes

The work involves adhering to very strict safety procedures, with high standards set not only by their employer but also by the government’s Health and Safety Executive. Therefore, the job requires specific training and good teamwork. The work can be physically demanding, especially when working in various weather conditions, and there can be a lot of travel when working on different sites.