The Queensland government has confirmed it will work to address a loophole in its new licensing framework for air conditioning and refrigeration technicians.
At the beginning of 2020, a new HVAC&R licensing framework was introduced in Queensland. Workers now require a Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC) licence for mechanical services work. This includes air conditioning and refrigeration, as well as plumbing and medical gases.
Over the past months, various industry groups – including the ARC, ARMA, AMCA and RACCA – have raised concerns about one of the technical qualifications accepted for the air conditioning and refrigeration licence.
The Certificate III in Engineering Mechanical Trade (MEM30219) covers a wide range of mechanical trade work, including fitting and machining, but not necessarily air conditioning and refrigeration. This effectively creates a loophole in the regulations, whereby a worker can obtain a licence without the skills needed to work on refrigeration and air conditioning systems.
In a move that has been applauded by industry, the Department of Housing and Public Works will be reviewing the prescribed technical qualifications for the licence.