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Dame Judith Hackitt presents first EAL Level 3 NVQ Diplomas in electronic fire and security systems

The ASFP is preparing to resume face-to-face classroom training on Passive Fire Protection in Dublin and Coventry on Wednesday 8 July.

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The first EAL Level 3 NVQ Diplomas in Providing Electronic Fire and Security Systems have been awarded.

The ceremony, held on 16 January 2024, saw Dame Judith Hackitt DBE, Chair of the EAL board, and Al Parkes, EAL’s Managing Director, present the diplomas to the four successful candidates.

A milestone in fire safety and security education

Shaun Wright, Daren Pool, Gary Flockton, and John Watts are the first individuals to complete this challenging qualification.

Launched in 2020, the diploma marks a substantial advancement in fire safety certification.

It serves both as part of an apprenticeship in Northern Ireland and Wales and as a pathway for experienced workers in the fire sector to achieve recognised standards.

The Electrotechnical Certification Scheme (ECS) for a Fire, Emergency and Security Systems (FESS) Technician gold card acknowledges the diploma.

It also meets baseline competency requirements following the review into individual competence after the Grenfell tragedy, led by Dame Judith Hackitt DBE.

Profiles of the pioneering diploma recipients

  • Shaun Wright, a self-employed electrician and fire alarm specialist, mainly works with schools in Nottinghamshire, managing complex fire panel systems.
  • Daren Pool, Co-Founder and Managing Director of Triple Star Fire and Security Limited, has a BEng in Building Engineering.
  • He is actively involved in industry committees and contributes to safety protocols.
  • Gary Flockton, Associate Director at Kiwa Fire Safety Compliance, specialises in smoke and evacuation modelling, structural fire engineering, and radiation analysis.
  • John Watts, an experienced electrician, specialises in high-level fire alarm and detection systems in HMP Prisons in Norfolk.

Insights from Dr Tom Brookes, Managing Director of ZZEUS Training

Dr Tom Brookes shared: “I am delighted that four learners from ZZEUS Training have broken new ground in achieving the EAL Level 3 Diploma in Providing Electronic Fire and Security Systems.

“We’re exploring the possibility of making this qualification a recognised pathway to membership of the Institution of Engineering and Technology, which would elevate fire alarm engineers to professional engineering status.”

ZZEUS Training, known for its unique approach to fire alarm training, provides extensive practical training.

It operates the UK’s only EAL and British Fire Consortium Centre of Excellence dedicated fire alarm technician training centre.

Comments from Al Parkes, Managing Director, EAL

Al Parkes stated: “As the specialist Awarding Organisation, End Point Assessment Organisation and skills partner for the Engineering & Manufacturing and Building Services Engineering industries, we seek to ensure that all our qualifications provide the right skills at the right time to keep up with evolving industry and societal needs.

“The EAL Level 3 NVQ Diploma in Providing Electronic Fire and Security Systems is a great example of this, addressing the need for highly skilled professionals to ensure these systems keep us safe.”

IFSJ Comment

The presentation of the first EAL Level 3 NVQ Diplomas in Providing Electronic Fire and Security Systems marks a significant step in the fire safety and security industry.

This initiative addresses a longstanding need for formalised, recognised training and certification for professionals in this critical sector.

By aligning with industry standards and legislative requirements, these diplomas enhance the skills and competencies of fire safety professionals, ultimately contributing to public safety.

The involvement of esteemed figures like Dame Judith Hackitt and the collaboration of organisations such as ZZEUS Training and ECS further underscore the importance of this qualification.

As the fire safety industry continues to evolve, particularly in the wake of incidents like the Grenfell tragedy, the role of comprehensive and rigorous training programmes becomes increasingly vital.

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