As of July 1st 2020, only accredited fire safety practitioners will be able to approve fire safety plans and fire safety systems. This means whoever does your fire safety systems verification must be FPAS accredited. Using an accredited practitioner (or APFS) is a critical matter. Failure to do so can open you up to ridiculously high fines from council.
To make it easy, I’ll explain what to look for so you aren’t taken for a ride by someone undercutting a true professional by a couple dollars.
The official title of an FPAS fire expert is a Accredited Practitioner (Fire Safety) or APFS. It’s a bit of a mouthful, but experts with this accreditation meet all the NSW requirements for insurance, competency and code of practice.
Until recently, this accreditation was a voluntary measure, but it’s now mandatory in NSW. Fire inspections done by ‘experts’ without this accreditation are only good for use as kindling.
The good news?
At 2020 Fire Protection, all our assessment personnel are Accredited Practitioners.
We were some of the first to be unrestricted practitioners and our CEO is a Director of the Fire Protection Association of Australia – so you know you’re safe in our hands.
What is the Fire Protection Accreditation Scheme?
The Fire Protection Accreditation Scheme (FPAS) is a way to make sure skills and competencies are uniform across the country. The NSW Government has adopted this co-regulatory scheme to ensure the fire safety industry is competent and delivering safe buildings for YOU.
Accreditation can take 4 years to achieve, even for people who’ve worked in fire safety for a long time.
Fire safety is something we take very seriously at 2020 Fire Protection. Well thought out fire plans save lives, and well maintained safety systems stop fires before they become a problem.
As a company, we’re pleased to see the industry as a whole is finally moving towards a higher standard. As industry leaders, with our CEO being a Director of Fire Protection Association Australia and part of the NSW Fire Safety Steering Committee, our staff have held FPAS accreditation since the inception, however it’s great to see this has finally become mandatory in NSW.
How Incorrect FPAS Accreditation can Cost You
Here’s why having the right accreditation is important. If the person performing your annual fire safety assessment isn’t FPAS accredited for that category, this can hold up your AFSS (Annual Fire Safety Statement.) Not having a current AFSS can lead to hefty council fines and insurance liability.
The bottom line? It’s worth getting your safety assessments done right the first time. It won’t cost you much more in the short term, but will save you a lot in the long run – not to mention knowing that you are in a building that is safe from fire!
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