Changing Your Fire Protection Provider
Fire safety is of paramount importance to every business in every building around the world.
There are fire protection companies who can provide a business with the fire safety equipment, training and inspections they require, but there may come a time when a business wants to switch to a new provider.
In this article, we’re going to look at how to identify a good fire protection company, and the things you need to know to make the switch smoothly.
Collect your records
When you’re switching to a new fire protection company, the new company will need to see your business’ fire safety records. These records consist of detailed findings from fire risk assessments, inspections and all work completed by your previous or existing fire protection provider.
Any prospective fire protection company will want to know what work has been done, what areas of your property have been worked on, and if there are any locations/appliances that are approaching a scheduled maintenance/inspection period.
Keep track of periodic works
Although the fire protection company should provide this for you, it will help if you’ve maintained a record of periodic inspections and services. Things like fire extinguisher maintenance (every six years), smoke detector sensitivity testing (every two years), and replacing the gauges in your sprinkler systems (every four years) are irregular yet vital works, so a new company will need to know when they were last carried out.
This will save a lot of time, hassle and potentially serious problems – if you have no records of these works, your sprinkler system could be well overdue for a service, and without it, it may fail you at a crucial time.
What to look for in a fire protection company
There are plenty of things that signify whether or not a fire protection company is worth your trust and your money. Choosing the right fire protection provider can save you from all manner of problems, ranging from minor inconveniences to serious threats to safety, so here are a few things to look out for.
All reputable fire protection companies will hold accreditations for various services. Accreditations include:
BAFE: The British Approvals for Fire Equipment – BAFE authorises third party businesses for the sale of specific fire safety equipment and services. This accreditation is crucial for providing a range of fire protection work. Types of BAFE accreditation include the BAFE Modular Scheme SP203 for the design, installation and upkeep of fire alarm systems, and BAFE BS 5306 Part 3 for the commission and maintenance of portable fire extinguishers.
The British Fire Consortium: The BFC provides details of fire safety companies for customers who are in the market for one. If a fire protection company is on the BFC register, you can be sure it’s a reliable one.
BSI: The British Standards Institute are the premier business regulators in the country. They ensure businesses across a range of industries are meeting the necessary standards, as well as advising them on how to improve their performance and service.
Other accreditations include:
- CHAS – The Contractors Health and Safety Assessment Scheme
- FIA – The Fire Industry Association
What services do they provide?
Fire safety encompasses a wide range of services, and it’s important that your chosen fire protection provider is able to deliver these services and deliver them properly. From the installation and maintenance of fire extinguishers, fire alarm systems and sprinkler systems to fire risk assessments and fire safety training, make sure any prospective company can cover all aspects of fire safety.
As well as installing new equipment, your fire safety company should provide maintenance and repairs in order to keep your fire safety equipment in full working order.
Read through a prospective provider’s examples of previous work to see the kind of services they provide. This will give you a clear idea of whether or not they’ll also be able to help you.
When choosing a new fire protection company, it’s important to get your house in order first. Collect all records and request copies from your existing protection company if you don’t have them yourself.
Do your research on prospective providers and make sure you’re completely comfortable with their accreditations and their services and you’ll make the right choice.
Elite Fire are proud to be a leading independent fire safety company, serving customers throughout the UK with our first-rate services. From the installation and maintenance of fire safety equipment such as fire extinguishers, fire alarm systems, sprinklers and fire doors to PAT testing, fire risk assessments and fire safety training, we do it all. We’re fully accredited by industry-leading bodies, and we’re ready to help you. Contact us today to find out more.
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