Keeping sites safe with the right Fire and Security Engineers 

May 25, 2021

Who should install your fire alarm system

When installing effective fire detection and robust fire alarm systems, we can help recruit some of the most experienced and knowledgeable fire alarm engineers around.  

Continually keeping your client’s sites safe and protected is essential – safe in the knowledge that high standards of fire and security are upheld at all times.  

But who should you hire to help you achieve this?  

The safety of people and places is paramount. Ultimately, you need to ensure that the fire detection systems you install are adequate, fit for purpose, and meet current UK regulations.  

However, unfortunately, UK fire alarm regulations aren’t 100% clear on who is the best person to install a fire alarm system.  

But what is clear is that the person must be competent.  

In this post, we look at the role of both a Fire alarm engineer and an electrical contractor and everyone’s responsibilities to keep people and properties safe.  


Electrical contractors vs. security alarm engineers 

Electrical contractors are not specifically trained in the British Standards BS5839 Part 1, which means many will not have received or taken part in any formal training surrounding fire alarm installation.  

As such, common errors do occur where electricians don’t use fireproof cables between the main supply and the fire detection systems, which can result in the detectors failing in an emergency.  

A qualified fire alarm engineer will be aware of this cabling requirement, and therefore, this scenario would be very unlikely to occur.  

Fire alarm installation must also consider system design which includes copious amounts of planning.  

This planning and design phase will help ensure that if a fire does break out, the systems in place will detect it quickly and effectively.  

This is where a fire alarm engineer’s strength lies—having in-depth knowledge of the design aspect of fire alarms and security systems and understanding the different system types suitable for a range of properties.  

The benefit?    

You have an experienced professional employee within your team, representing your business, understanding your requirements, providing you with a range of suitable fire and security systems fit for purpose and required by law.  

But the ultimate question remains… Can an electrician install a fire alarm system?  

Ideally, for a fire alarm system to be deemed fully compliant, electricians should work closely with qualified fire alarm engineers to ensure systems in place meet the required standards.  

If this is achievable, you can rest assured that the right level of due care and attention is being applied.  

Fire alarm engineers will always be fully conversant and prepared on the system before installation. Knowledgeable and in the know regarding 99.9% of systems!  

BAFE – The fire safety register 

If you’re looking for accreditations, BAFE is an independent register of all fire safety providers who have proven themselves competent, provide a high-quality service, and work to the latest industry standards.   

Companies are assessed against  set of competencies relating to fire and life safety services to achieve this status.  

This means to achieve this accreditation; contractors must meet the quality audit process that demonstrates their professionalism and experience.  

Contractors may also be certified by the Fire Industry Association (FIA), which promotes those professionals operating in the UK fire safety industry.  

Fire and security jobs 

Job vacancies within the fire and security industry require various skills, qualifications, experience, and training.  

In particular, new legislation coming into force throughout the UK and Europe is now set to consider a minimum training requirement level relating to fire alarm installation. For example, the EN 16763 states that a level 3 qualification will be the minimum recommended level that a fire alarm engineer will have to hold in the future.  

(Note: This is not a mandatory requirement yet, however, the emphasis is on “yet”).  

These set standards will help to raise quality and hopefully reduce inadequate fire detection systems being in place.  

What to look for in a competent security and fire alarm engineer 

  • They know the different types of systems and which ones are most suitable for various properties/buildings. 
  • They understand the strategic positions to place alarms for maximum detection. 
  • They help to avoid false alarms. 
  • They have a sound background in the electrical field. 
  • They can identify different grades of systems and their suitability for domestic, commercial, or industrial purposes. 
  • They understand BS 5839 and BS 5839-6, including the design, commissioning, and installation of fire detection and fire alarm systems. 
  • They can provide a commissioning and testing certificate. 

Ensure your client’s fire alarm systems are installed, tested, serviced, and maintained by a highly trained, experienced expert supplied by Secure and Recruit.  

Call us today on 01480 275 700. 


Reference video: Britton 757