The United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) has accredited the National Security Inspectorate’s (NSI) new Kitchen Fire Protection Systems Scheme (incorporating BAFE SP206), effective from 21 February 2019.
The NSI is the first certification body in the UK licensed by BAFE – the UK’s independent register of quality fire safety service providers – to independently audit and issue approvals to companies who design, install, commission, recharge and maintain commercial kitchen fire protection systems.
Approved companies now have the authority to issue NSI/BAFE Certificates of Compliance at the time of installation and subsequent maintenance visits. Those who use and/or are responsible for premises housing commercial kitchens can demonstrate due diligence in maintaining safe, fit-for-purpose facilities by holding a valid certificate.
The new Kitchen Fire Protection Systems Scheme requires approved companies to evidence ongoing competence of engineers. This, together with issued Certificates of Compliance, ensures the design integrity of new installations, the correct completion of periodic maintenance and inspection to confirm the installation requirements remain valid or, where necessary, that installations are suitably adapted.
Richard Jenkins, CEO at the NSI, commented: “Achieving UKAS accreditation for this important new scheme – a first within the UK market – is testament to the capability the NSI has in delivering in this critical area. In the last year, the media has reported several instances of fires breaking out in commercial kitchens. Any instance is one too many. The risk of unextinguished fire to people, property and Fire and Rescue Services personnel attending incidents is clear. The NSI wholly supports the drive by BAFE, insurers and the professional industry to encourage Best Practice in tackling this risk.”
Particular value is seen in providing installers with the capability to re-issue Certificates of Compliance – much like an ‘MOT’ – on completion of scheduled maintenance visits, providing assurance to building occupiers and insurers alike that building operators are taking their responsibilities seriously in ensuring that hazardous environments are adequately protected.
Installers of kitchen fire protection systems can find out more about the new scheme at the NSI Summit on 21 March at The Vox Conference Centre in Birmingham where Chris Auger, BAFE’s scheme manager, is presenting an insightful overview session highlighting the key criteria required to demonstrate competency.
Stephen Adams, BAFE’s CEO, said: “We’re very pleased that the NSI has been awarded UKAS accreditation to deliver BAFE’s SP206 Scheme. The NSI has been involved from the outset and has played a pivotal role in developing this new scheme. We welcome the NSI’s rigorous independent assessment within this sector where fire industry/insurance data shows food and drink-related fires are statistically the third most likely cause of large fires.”