SSAIB News

SSAIB-Registered Amthal Fire & Security Upgrades Kenilworth Court’s Door Entry System

SSAIB-Registered Amthal Fire & Security Upgrades Kenilworth Court’s Door Entry System

SSAIB-registered Amthal Fire & Security Limited have worked closely with the management team and residents at Kenilworth Court to ensure fire and security upgrades on site occur without compromising on the aesthetics of the Edwardian mansion blocks.

Situated in Putney, Kenilworth Court consists of eight purpose-built Edwardian style blocks of flats that were completed in 1904-05. Featuring 150 portered flats - with a garden in the middle - it is now run by the controlling company, Kenilworth Court Co-ownership Housing Association Ltd.

However, Amthal – who are certified for Security Systems, Fire Detection and Alarms and ISO 9001 through SSAIB – were introduced into the development when the opportunity to upgrade door entry from audio to video capability arose.

The company were so successful in understanding the importance of keeping with original design features, working closely with the management team and residents - from initial specification through installation and project completion - Amthal now additionally maintains security gates and all fire requirements on site.

Steve Logie, general manager at Kenilworth Court Co-Ownership Housing Association Ltd told sourcesecurity.com: “With the historic significance of our development, and the pride of notable residents who have lived here, any upgrades, however small, must be carefully considered with regards to how it will impact on the aesthetics of the overall premises.

“Amthal understood this and worked closely with us and our residents, carefully taking in feedback to create bespoke video door entry solutions that blend with the grand entrances. Installation was sympathetic, always ensuring wiring was discreet and ‘boxed in’ where necessary.

 

Posted: 19/06/2020 more >

SSAIB Systems to Receive Speed Boost Following Weekend Improvements

SSAIB Systems to Receive Speed Boost Following Weekend Improvements

SSAIB-registered firms are advised that the installer portal, SSAIB website and company search feature will be unavailable for approximately four hours on Friday night (June 12.)

The SSAIB network will be taken offline at 5pm - once the organisation has ceased working for the weekend - due to the leading UKAS-accredited certification body for the fire and security industries moving our connectivity to a leased line, which will result in a significantly faster system speed once these upgrades have been completed.

We apologise for any inconvenience that these system improvements may cause.

Posted: 11/06/2020 more >

UKAS Back BAFE's SSAIB-Supported Don't Just Specify, Verify! Campaign

UKAS Back BAFE's SSAIB-Supported Don't Just Specify, Verify! Campaign

The United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) have announced their full support for BAFE’s Don’t Just Specify, Verify! Campaign, which focuses on the importance of UKAS-accredited third-party certification.

The campaign - launched by the BAFE Fire Safety Register earlier this year - was established to create greater awareness of third-party certification in the fire safety sector. It is important that all premises management (i.e. the Responsible Person/Duty Holder) understand quality regulation is present in the fire safety industry, through UKAS-accredited third-party certification, and specify these appropriate providers.

This should always be followed up with verifying their certification, which is a quick action to ensure they have been assessed and deemed competent to deliver the specific service required.

Matt Gantley, the CEO for UKAS stated: “UKAS is delighted to see this important initiative from BAFE and we offer it our full support. Accredited third-party certification of fire safety services is an essential element of fulfilling statutory obligations.

“UKAS is the only accreditation body recognised by the UK Government and BAFE have always shown great commitment to meeting this ‘gold standard’.”

BAFE chief executive Stephen Adams commented: “It is excellent to report UKAS’ support for the ‘Don’t Just Specify, Verify!’ campaign. This campaign is to benefit all UKAS-accredited third-party certification in the fire safety industry, not just BAFE - as we feel evidential competence is the key issue here for life safety.

“The wider public needs to be aware of these options, to be confident they are using competent providers. This can reassure them that an appropriate provider is being used, especially at this time when so many businesses are planning to get back to work and need to review their fire safety protection.”

Further information on BAFE’s Don’t Just Specify, Verify! campaign can be found at https://www.bafe.org.uk/Dont-Just-Specify-Verify-Third-Party-Certification

Posted: 09/06/2020 more >

Free Security Webinar for SSAIB Members – COVID-19: Back to Business

Free Security Webinar for SSAIB Members – COVID-19: Back to Business

SSAIB-registered firms are invited to a free security webinar on Wednesday June 3 at 2pm.

Hosted by Health and Safety and HR experts Citation, the session will cover the latest guidance on the immediate challenges posed by COVID-19 - including furlough, pay, self-isolation, holidays, risk assessments, hand hygiene, communication with staff, working from home, and legal responsibilities.

They will also discuss how businesses can prepare to return to work safely and protect their futures - as well as providing a reminder of employment law changes and The Good Work Plan.

Click here to register your place

The webinar will run between 90 minutes and two hours, and there will be an opportunity to ask their experts your questions about the current situation and future changes.


To help future-proof your business, some of the new discussion topics will include:

• Bringing furloughed staff back the right way;
• Prepping your workplace for the new world of work (considering social distancing, Personal Protective Equipment, RPE and facemasks, and risk assessments);
• Advice on handling grievances among returning staff;
• Structuring your business so you’re in the strongest position possible;
• Managing a workforce that expects new levels of flexibility.

Places are first-come-first-serve, so please reserve your place today to avoid missing out.

Once you have registered using the above link, please click here for further details for helpful tips on how to join on the day.

Posted: 29/05/2020 more >

SSAIB Marks Two Successful Months of Remote Audits with Southern Fire Alarms Discussion

SSAIB Marks Two Successful Months of Remote Audits with Southern Fire Alarms Discussion

Following the enforced lockdown restrictions introduced to help combat the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, SSAIB took the decision to continue to offer certification by embracing new technology and migrating over to remote auditing.

With the remote audit process now having been in place for two months, SSAIB spoke with Heather Martin – operations manager of SSAIB-registered firm Southern Fire Alarms Ltd - to discuss their own remote audit conducted during the height of lockdown last month.

The West Sussex-based company – who have been SSAIB-registered to install fire alarms since April 2008 – were due to have their annual BAFE SP203-1 on April 22, but saw this changed to a remote audit when it was clear that it was no longer possible for auditor Stephen Jenkins to conduct a visit in person on that date.

Despite some initial apprehension about this new development - after initially wanting to postpone the audit following lockdown - Heather revealed that she is now pleased they were able to go ahead with it when they did.

Heather commented: “I was very apprehensive beforehand and thought it would be easier to just extend it for six months - as an audit was the last thing we wanted to be doing with the other business changes we were needing to implement. However – in hindsight – I’m so glad we have done it.

“By doing it now, it means that we can carry on for another 12 months and we’re not trying to scramble with everyone else to get in for an audit in six months’ time – as I’m sure there’d be much more of a backlog had SSAIB not switched to remote audits.

With regards to the audit process itself, Heather commented: “The system that SSAIB have put in place was easy to navigate and the guidance document was clear in relation to the evidence that required uploading.

“On the day of the audit, our auditor Stephen called promptly to explain how he would work through the documents. He then called again the following day to summarise his findings.

“The actual remote audit was less time-consuming than normal, to be honest. I had already uploaded everything that we needed to beforehand, so Stephen called promptly at the start of the day to explain how he would work through the documents.

“Therefore, in that sense, I actually gained quite a lot of the time that would have otherwise been spent on a normal audit.

Being ushered into a remote audit isn’t the only change that SFA – who recently celebrated their 20th anniversary – have had to make due to the continuing battle to contain the coronavirus. However, Heather believes that the company’s “loyal core of key personnel” is their secret weapon to help them negotiate the difficult time we all find ourselves in at present.

Heather added: “We’ve had to make quite significant changes to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. Unfortunately, we have had to furlough some of our engineers and maintain a skeleton staff in the office. With social distancing, everything has had to be kept at a minimum so we’ve got people working from home as well.”

“In some respects, we’re very lucky that we have a low turnover of staff – as it means we have a loyal core of key personnel that have been able to carry on and ensure everything runs as smoothly as it can during this time.

"Without that commitment of those key staff members, we simply would not have got through this. It’s not been easy, but we’re working together – as it’s a balance between safety for all of our staff and ensuring the survival of the company.”

“We are still carrying out servicing, emergency breakdowns and critical works. We’re just having to adapt, day-to-day and customer-to-customer, to decide whether we can go in and carry out works.

Despite the impact that COVID-19 has had on the Bognor Regis-based installation company – who also added Security Systems to their SSAIB scope of certification in October 2017 – Heather insisted that SFA’s certification with SSAIB was still of the upmost importance and that it was necessary for themselves and the wider industry to remain as a third-party certified organisation.

Heather said: “I think it’s really important to ensure that we continue our certification with SSAIB during this time – as there is going to be an end to this at some stage and that’ll bring a lot  of work, some of which will be tendered. If we don’t have the certification when that end date arrives then we’ll miss out, it’s as simple as that.

“I also think it’s important for the industry as a whole that we have accreditation and that standards are maintained– especially in the current climate.

“Of course, other companies might not be in the fortunate situation we are with being able to continue with their certification at this time. However, I’d say those companies who are able to carry on like ourselves will reap the rewards of doing so when everything starts picking up again.”

The whole world is still waiting to see how long this pandemic will last, the overall effect it will have on us all, our everyday lives and the various economies around the globe, but Heather – who has worked within the industry for over two decades - revealed that her own post-lockdown plans are a lot more down-to-earth and personal.

When asked about the first thing she would do after all of the restrictions have been lifted, Heather replied: “Go on holiday! Somewhere with sunshine ideally.

“I’m a planner and always have things arranged months in advance. Nothing is going ahead at the moment, so everything is getting struck out in the diary and it seems to be never-ending at present.

“It would be nice to be able to add a holiday in there as an end-point, to give us something to look forward to. Of course, it will also be great to see friends and family again and I’m especially looking forward to being able to give people a hug again – especially my mum and dad.”

Posted: 22/05/2020 more >