FIA develops new Level 3 qualification in fire detection and alarm systems

The Fire Industry Association (FIA) is offering training to a new Level 3 qualification for the fire detection and alarms (FD&A) sector, namely the FIA Awarding Organisation Level 3 Fundamentals of Fire Detection and Alarm Systems in Non-Domestic Premises. This qualification is designed to provide a concise and focused introduction to the FD&A sector. It’s ideal for anyone looking for a qualification in fire detection.

The training comprises two two-day training units with an ‘open book’ examination at the end of the second unit. Those who pass will gain a Level 3 qualification based on BS 5839-1.

Following the Grenfell Tower tragedy and Dame Judith Hackitt’s subsequent Independent Review of Building Regulations and Fire Safety, plus listening to industry feedback, the FIA reviewed its current training and Level 3 qualifications available and identified the need for a more succinct Level 3 qualification focusing on the fundamentals of fire detection and alarm management.

FIA CEO Ian Moore informed Risk Xtra: “We’ve been running our Level 3 qualifications for over a year now and it’s clear from the feedback that a different style of examination is needed. Modern examination techniques focus more on where to find the information that’s readily available (ie through the Internet, manuals or standards) and not a memory test as some of us were used to ‘back in the day’. The new Fundamentals qualification will have an open book (BS 5839-1 or the FIA training manual) examination. Having completed what we consider to be this world-class training, learners will be able to approach the examination with confidence.”

It’s widely accepted that a key way in which to demonstrate competency in FD&A is to be qualified to Level 3. The FIA Awarding Organisation’s Fundamentals qualification is registered on the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF), which is equivalent to a Level 4 on the European Qualifications Framework (EQF).

*For more information about the qualification or to enrol on the two training units visit

About the Author
Brian Sims BA (Hons) Hon FSyI, Editor, Risk UK (Pro-Activ Publications) Beginning his career in professional journalism at The Builder Group in March 1992, Brian was appointed Editor of Security Management Today in November 2000 having spent eight years in engineering journalism across two titles: Building Services Journal and Light & Lighting. In 2005, Brian received the BSIA Chairman’s Award for Promoting The Security Industry and, a year later, the Skills for Security Special Award for an Outstanding Contribution to the Security Business Sector. In 2008, Brian was The Security Institute’s nomination for the Association of Security Consultants’ highly prestigious Imbert Prize and, in 2013, was a nominated finalist for the Institute's George van Schalkwyk Award. An Honorary Fellow of The Security Institute, Brian serves as a Judge for the BSIA’s Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the Securitas Good Customer Award. Between 2008 and 2014, Brian pioneered the use of digital media across the security sector, including webinars and Audio Shows. Brian’s actively involved in 50-plus security groups on LinkedIn and hosts the popular Risk UK Twitter site. Brian is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit. He has organised and chaired conference programmes for both IFSEC International and ASIS International and has been published in the national media. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk UK at Pro-Activ Publications in July 2014 and as Editor of The Paper (Pro-Activ Publications' dedicated business newspaper for security professionals) in September 2015. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk Xtra at Pro-Activ Publications in May 2018.

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