BAFE, British Approvals for Fire Equipment, the independent register of quality fire safety service providers, has announced their latest Scheme, BAFE SP207, currently in the final stages of development.
BAFE SP207 Scheme
BAFE SP207 covers the design, installation, commissioning and maintenance of evacuation alert systems. These systems are used by fire and rescue services in buildings containing flats (including single-storey flats and maisonettes) across the UK.
The Scheme has been developed with the support and cooperation of the National Security Inspectorate (NSI), Gerda and other industry parties.
The new BAFE Scheme observes best practice and the recent standard developed by BSI, BS 8629 (Code of practice for the design, installation, commissioning and maintenance of evacuation alert systems for use by fire and rescue services in buildings containing flats), published in November 2019.
BAFE SP207 Evacuation Alert Systems Scheme Document
BAFE has also made the BAFE SP207 Evacuation Alert Systems Scheme Document available to view
BAFE, British Approvals for Fire Equipment has also made the BAFE SP207 Evacuation Alert Systems Scheme Document available to view for interested parties and launched a four week consultation period, requesting comment from the fire safety industry, fire and rescue services, along with the wider safety industry.
BSI Group (The British Standards Institution) commented that the BS 8629 Standard exists to help ensure that fire safety systems are fit for purpose and to encourage uniformity. If the systems look and function the same way in every building, firefighters won’t waste any time understanding how they work and save precious time.
Sprinklers and Other Fire Safety Measures in High-Rise Blocks
In May 2020, the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government published a document, titled, ‘Government Response: Sprinklers and Other Fire Safety Measures in New High-Rise Blocks of Flats’.
In this published document, the Ministry revealed that 92% of respondents believe that Approved Document B should include a requirement for an emergency evacuation alert system, which could support fire and rescue services operational response, by quickly alerting residents of a building if they need to escape.
Evacuation alert system for high-rise blocks
The British Government responded that there was also strong support in the consultation responses for the inclusion of guidance on an evacuation alert system for high-rise blocks of flats, although many respondents also raised concerns about the use of this new technology.
It was always part of BAFE, British Approvals for Fire Equipment’s judgment to develop a Scheme to support the industry with a robust method of providing evidence of competency to work with these systems. BAFE strongly believes these systems in more buildings, when implemented correctly, will aid Fire and Rescue Services across the United Kingdom in saving countless lives.
Open to all UKAS Accredited Certification Bodies
The BAFE SP207 Evacuation Alert Systems Scheme consultation runs from 03/08/2020 to 31/08/2020 (closing at 11:45pm). The BAFE SP207 Scheme (For the Design, Installation, Commissioning and Maintenance of Evacuation Alert Systems) is open to all UKAS (United Kingdom Accreditation Service) Accredited Certification Bodies to become licensed to deliver this, with interested parties requested to contact the BAFE Office for further information.
BAFE, British Approvals for Fire Equipment advises all interested Certification Bodies to review the draft document available and provide comment to express their views regarding the criteria of the developed scheme. An extension to the consultation period can be permitted via Christopher Auger, Head of Schemes, at BAFE on request.