Euralarm, the European Trade Association for the fire and security industry, has moved to expand its activities into the fire extinguishing market, in turn offering new opportunities for its members and, indeed, the entire fire industry to act as one at a European level.
It’s now possible for new members – such as national Trade Associations and companies who are not represented at the European level – as well as active Euralarm members to apply for membership of the new Fire Extinguishing Section.
Organised as an umbrella association, Euralarm already comprises an electronic Fire Alarm Section in addition to an Electronic Security Section and another for services related to both fire and security.
The new Fire Extinguishing Section aims to represent companies and national associations active in technologies such as water-based suppression systems (ie sprinklers and watermist solutions, etc), portable fire extinguishers, fixed extinguishing installations and firefighting agents as well as new and emerging active technologies designed to extinguish or otherwise contain fires.
For the first time, these industry actors will now have a real chance of making their voices heard in Brussels.
The timing of Euralarm’s extension into fire extinguishing is crucial, as discussions at the European level on the renewal of the Construction Products Regulation (CPR) are now starting in parallel with an industry-wide dialogue on fire requirements and possible legislation facilitated by the newly-launched EU Commission’s Fire Industry Exchange Platform, a yearly policy forum at which Euralarm has already presented an important position paper.
The CPR is a piece of legislation which has been helping to standardise test methods and ensure the Europe-wide acceptance of test results for electronic fire safety products. However, it covers a very wide assortment of products with very different characteristics. Where the CPR logic can very easily apply for certain construction materials, Euralarm’s position is that it has a negative effect on the standardisation of fire detection and alarm products.
The Trade Association firmly believes that unified representation for active fire protection in Brussels would strengthen the position of an industry which has long been in need of a common voice when it comes to the CPR issue. Such representation will allow it to be a stronger partner for the EU Commission and Parliament, both in terms of current and future initiatives focused on fire safety in Europe.
The industry’s combined efforts will most certainly now allow it to find market-driven solutions in the standardisation issues related to the CPR.
Key fire industry issues
Regarding the Fire Industry Exchange Platform, the dialogue between the industry and EU policymakers at the first meeting in Brussels explored the key fire industry issues in Europe regarding multi-tenanted buildings in the wake of last summer’s Grenfell Tower tragedy. Having a fuller representation in the fire industry allows Euralarm to better present its needs and offer a more comprehensive view.
Additionally, the new Fire Extinguishing Section will open a forum for Euralarm members to discuss and prioritise their own specific topics that, until now, have been left out of the Trade Association’s EU advocacy activities. These include REACH and the Pressure Equipment Directives, or the F-Gas Regulations.
For its part, Euralarm represents the electronic fire and security industry, providing leadership and expertise for the market, policymakers and standards bodies alike. Its members help to make society safer and more secure through systems and services for fire extinguishing, detection, intrusion detection, access control, video monitoring and alarm transmission. Founded in 1970, Euralarm currently represents over 5,000 companies within the fire safety and security industry. Members include national associations and individual companies from across Europe.