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Coronavirus Update - BAFE SP101 Registered Companies 20/03/2020
Friday 20th March 2020
Information regarding exam invigilation, technician assessments, refresher, asbestos awareness and health and safety training.
Information published 20/03/2020
The health, safety and wellbeing of BAFE staff, customers and associates is our absolute priority. We are monitoring the official advice available to us and our responsibility to reduce the risk posed to those participating in extinguisher exam invigilation and technician assessments.
Following the recent update from the Government regarding the COVID-19 Coronavirus, and the ever changing situation on self-isolation and social distancing, I have agreed the following actions regarding exam invigilation and technician assessments. We consider the following action will help our registered companies at this difficult time.
All but a small minority of extinguisher technician exams will be postponed from Friday 20th March until at least the end of May 2020 and the situation will be reviewed on a weekly basis. This is due to the availability of invigilators and their close proximity to multiple people both in the exam room and the one-to-one practical assessments.
There will be instances where an invigilator may be available, but this will be limited to Scotland and far North of England where cover is currently available.
Trainers may still provide course to candidates, but they have been advised that we are not able to support an exam at the end of the course subject to the above exception. We have also been advised that IFEDA have suspended all training until June and we are starting to see some of our training organizations cancel their courses however it should be noted that some training organizations continue to run training courses.
A number of our assessors have shared concerns over conducting initial and ongoing assessments and therefore, where an assessor is unavailable, I have agreed a concession to our normal process whereby the assessment may be deferred for a period of three months. This will be reviewed on a weekly basis.
You are advised to check with the BAFE office for confirmation of availability. We will of course try to continue as normal for as long as possible but will provide further updates as the situation with the COVID-19 virus develops.
We have considered the practicalities of requesting and insisting on receiving this information and have agreed that this will be deferred for an initial period of three months and reviewed on a monthly basis. If any of the required documentation is not available, we will allow a concession if the technician or organization can provide evidence that they are unable to complete the refresher training due to the training organization cancelling or postponing their training. Qualifications and technician ID cards will not lapse during this time.
In the current Coronavirus situation BAFE is monitoring the current positions of our Certification Bodies regarding new and annual assessments. Their audit arrangements are somewhat different and all companies are advised to maintain contact with their certification body if they have an assessment due over the next few weeks.
BAFE will endeavor to be flexible and reasonable about their respective scheme’s requirements for continuity of certification, where companies can demonstrate that they have taken all steps possible to comply with their CBs advice.
We will be closing the BAFE offices shortly and staff will be working from home where this is practically possible. We will be regularly monitoring the phones, messages and emails, so there may be a short delay in responding to your questions, but we will do so.
Staffordshire Fire and Rescue is advising businesses to review fire risk assessments Thursday 26th March 2020
Home Office informs the FIA about Key Worker status of fire safety personnel Monday 23rd March 2020
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