FPA win at FSM awards

The FPA has won Fire Safety Project of the Year at the 2024 Fire and Security Matters (FSM) Awards in recognition of its recently launched RISC 501 test method.

Acknowledging the organisation’s extensive work in developing combustible cladding test methods, the FPA was honoured to take home the Fire Safety Project of the Year award at this year’s FSM Awards. The award recognises the FPA’s recently launched RISC 501: Fire Test and Assessment Method for External Cladding Systems that was developed to address the limitations of current UK testing criteria for combustible cladding systems in high-rise buildings (HRBs).

Led by Technical Director for the FPA, George Edwardes, the development of the method followed an extensive research project involving the University of Central Lancashire, external consultants, and insurers. Created through RISCAuthority, the test method works by evaluating the non-loadbearing external cladding systems, to go beyond the basic life safety standards to ensure resilient systems that can effectively prevent vertical spread.

In a recent market survey carried out by the FPA, which sought views in relation to the compliance of cladding on HRBs, many participants shared a strong preference for a more robust assessment method for cladding testing. Notably, the survey also highlighted a current lack of coordinated approach to the topic of fire safety compliance for cladding on HRBs, with RISCAuthority to convene a Cladding Focus Forum next month to address this. Further information can be found here.

Held at the Coventry Building Society Arena in Coventry on 12 June, the awards evening saw more than 800 attendees come together to celebrate innovation and achievements in the fire and security sectors.

Picking up the award on the night was FPA Managing Director Gavin Dunn, who said: “It was a privilege to receive the Fire Safety Project of the Year award at the FSM Awards on behalf of the amazing FPA team for their work on the new RISC 501 cladding fire test standard.

Split across fire safety and security, the categories included Fire Innovation of the Year, Fire Safety Manufacturer of the Year, Fire Industry Woman of the Year, and more. The award organisers confirmed that they had received a record 329 entries this year, signifying the ongoing efforts of the industry to improve fire safety and security across the country.

For the Fire Safety Project of the Year award in particular, sponsored by the Institute of Fire Safety Managers (IFSM), the FPA were up against a competitive shortlist that included the likes of Coopers Fire, Call Systems Technology (CST), Drax Technology, Early Birds Fire Protection (EBFP), Galliford Try Asset Intelligence, Global HSE Group, Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Hochiki Europe, Hyfire Wireless Fire Solutions Ltd, Howdens, and Orestone.