The Diploma course has been recognised by the IFSM, the IFE have confirmed it as a Recognised Educational Programme and the SQA have confirmed that it meets the academic qualification of Diploma level 10 with 50 credit points. CHSG is also an Approved Centre for the IFSM.
The course consists of 10 training days and two days of exams. Followed by a minimum 8000-word dissertation. The course is aimed at those who undertake the role of Responsible Person, or who are being developed to undertake this role.
The Diploma teacher time is 10 days, but the delegate is expected to dedicate adequate time to undertake regular private study in-between the units and to also undertake significant private study time in order to achieve the required level of understanding required to pass all of the exams along with the dissertation.
On this course you will be involved in various teaching techniques involving presentations, case studies and group working. As a course delegate you will be expected to contribute to the group discussions and will already have a working awareness of health, safety, and fire legislation, ACOPs, JCOPs and other recent fire related documentation, especially related to the Construction and associated industries. Delegates should also be aware, that there will be homework required to be undertaken in-between units.
Several of the course days also include specialist external speakers, who will provide greater in-depth knowledge and understanding in their particular fields. Some of these also include additional CPD certificates, that delegates are able to include for their own CPD portfolio.
Each day will always start with a review from the previous day, to ensure full understanding and confidence regarding the previous units’ content (except of course Unit 1). But also, the forum for all delegates to gain greater clarity and further information as/where required.
Unit 1 Legal Structures and the requirement for effective Management of Fire Safety.
First and foremost, this unit introduces the course structure as a whole, outlining the pathway to, successfully achieving the full Diploma. It also introduces the RRFSO 2005 and explains how utilizing available legislation, such as the Health & Safety at Work Act and specific Fire legislation, reference guides, British Standards and ACOPs, along with various draft legislation, should give you, the candidate, the information from which to base your understanding and therefore be able to confidently to identify how to protect relevant individuals in or about your workplace. It should also provide you with the ability to start identifying how to ensure how to use this information to protect your site and ensure that you follow the required levels of protection throughout the various Construction phases or Refurbishment etc site work. This will include direct and indirect reports from the construction and associated industries.
It also incorporates some of the newer legislation, both draft and current. Seeking to explain and encourage you to be able to utilize this in the current and new roles that are being detailed, ensuring your responsibilities and competence are also taken into consideration especially for higher risk and residential construction.
Unit 2 The Chemistry of Combustion & Principles of Explosion.
This unit explores the detailed aspects of fire itself and relates directly to the site activities, potential materials on site and also the higher risk aspects of explosion and higher risk plant machinery, chemicals and working practices. This unit is linked to DSEAR and also more specialist regulations for site materials, both stored and used on site.
It also introduces some of the more complex aspects of combustion and the management required to ensure safe site working practices, at the various stages of construction, and refurbishment.
The unit includes information on Fire Growth patterns, Fire Growth rates, and other specific fire phenomena, including how different burning materials can affect the rate of temperature rise and fire product output under specified circumstances. This unit will also introduce the fire safety management and the time versus tenable processes and the impacts of both doing it well and to identify the opportunities required to action it in a better / more effective way, including effective evacuation strategy development.
Unit 3 Creating, Managing and Maintaining an Effective Means of Escape
By the end of unit 3 you will be able to:
- Understand the requirements for effective pro-active fire safety management within Construction Strategic Safety Planning
- Identify and mark on a site plan suitable means of escape, wayfinding, single compartment lines, fire points, alarm and emergency lighting.
- Explain how travel distances within an MOE are calculated and what may affect them.
- Identify the fire safety requirements to be considered and introduced when utilizing scaffold as a means of escape.
- Explain the characteristics and design of a suitable and sufficient fire door.
- Understand how building materials differ when affected by the products of fire and explain how the fire resistance of structural elements can be enhanced.
- Outline the test standard requirements to ascertain Fire Spread Classification of specified materials and the reasoning behind their importance.
This unit will use architectural models, actual construction site plans and case study work to ensure that all delegates understand the full range of this topic and can understand and utilize the information and understand how to determine these requirements for their sites.
The external speaker on this course, provides a valuable insight into the specialist components and products available to overcome issues around compartmentation. Also providing insight into possible usage of materials and products now available to stop fire spread. They also give examples of what “good looks like” but more importantly where opportunities for improvement are key and how to identify poor workmanship or the wrong use of products and materials. This speaker also provides candidates with the opportunity to gain a valuable CPD certificate, which delegates can add to their portfolio.
Unit 4 Building Control and Enforcement Lectures – The Storage and Handling of Flammable and Explosive Materials.
We are also joined on this unit by a specialist speaker from the HSE.
By the end of Unit 4 you will be able to:
- Explain the requirements and duties made under DSEAR (Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres Regulations 2002)
- Create a suitable and sufficient process to install control measures to reduce the risk of Fire and Explosion from HAZMATS (Hazardous Materials)
- Explain the dangers and drawbacks associated with the storage of Acetylene gas and the alternative materials and working methods that can be used.
- Outline the measures required to store gas cylinders safely on site
- Understand and explain the hazards from the use and storage of DERV and the potential impact of electric vehicles on site and the installation of electric vehicle charging points:
- Identify the requirements to create a Waste management Plan to reduce both the Risk of Fire and Environmental pollution.
Unit 5 Fire Safety in Temporary Accommodation Units (TAU’s) and Fire Safety in Timber Construction.
By the end of Unit 5 you will be able to:
- Identify fire risks within TAU’s and explain where guidance on fire safety within or about TAU’s can be sourced.
- Create a suitable and sufficient system of general controls for the management of fire safety within or about TAU’s
- Identify MOE issues and instigate suitable and sufficient levels of active fire prevention
- Understand and explain the systematic control elements identified within the UKTFA document – 16 steps to fire safety
- Identify suitable levels of security – dependent upon build type and
- Identify, instigate and manage adequate control measures or water supplies and emergency services access to all relevant areas on site – including vehicular access.
This unit includes a specialist speaker from a Tier 1 Contractor who gives a first-hand understanding of the potential management issues related to fire in timber frame construction. Also, the important cost benefit analysis when clients see a cost saving in timber frame construction, but maybe the full cost benefit has not always been fully considered prior to the build stage, along with the costs associated during construction.
A recent catastrophic timber construction fire is also fully analysed and again first- hand knowledge of how to manage fire risks and how to improve fire safety on sites, gives all candidates an invaluable insight into how to improve site safety for all those associated with the site and the neighbourhood where the build is being undertaken.
Unit 6 Active Fire Safety Systems – Including Fixed Fire Suppression Systems, Fire Alarm Systems and Emergency Lighting.
By the end of Unit 6 you will be able to:
- Understand the various Active Fixed Fire Suppression Systems that are available and their positive attributes but also their limitations
- Identify the requirement to maintain a suitable system throughout the building(s), whilst undertaking both temporary and final installation
- Explain how a Fire Detection System operates and identify how the different point detectors work (including Aspiration systems), outlining their pros and cons and
- Identify the different types of emergency lighting systems available, how to establish a suitable Lux level in specific areas and how to protect the MOE. This will include both day and night working.
In this unit you will be joined by an expert from the supply of temporary alarm and lighting systems. They will also introduce some of the newer innovations regarding temporary to permanent installations without the need to install two separate systems!
Again, a very practical presentation using the most current systems and products available on the market, and also an up-to-date review of where the industry is going and how we can develop our fire safety strategies relying on some much improved, equipment. This presentation will ask the candidate to think pro-actively about their sites and also how they can improve these aspects of fire risk management in the work that they are involved with. This presentation also gives the delegate the opportunity to gain an additional CPD certificate.
Unit 7 Accident (Fire) Causation and Theory, Accident Investigation Process and Analysis
By the end of this Unit, you will be able to:
- Explain the basic theory of loss and casualty, their quantitative analysis, limitations of their application, and their presentation in numerical and graphical form relating these to the causation of fire
- Explain the statutory and the internal reporting and recording systems for loss events (injuries, ill-health, dangerous occurrences) and near misses
- Describe fire and loss investigations, the requirements, benefits, procedures, and documentation and the involvement of and communication with relevant staff, agencies and representatives
- Explore the possible uses and limitations of Event and Fault Tree Analysis to support an accident investigation (Loss Prevention).
Unit 8 Presentation Skills, Preparation, Presentation and Fire Load Calculations, Fire Modelling and Building Information Modelling – BIM.
As a Fire Safety Manager, you will be expected on occasion to conduct competent briefings and Fire Safety presentations to staff, management and others. Unit 8 will give you the basic skills, confidence and ability to present covering the following areas:
- The basic process of Fire Load calculations and its place in Fire Engineering, Design and Fire Risk Management
- The basic process of Fire Modelling and its uses within the processes of Fire safety
On this unit we are joined by an expert BIM modeler, who takes us through the use of BIM and all of the positive work that BIM can be used for, throughout the life of a construction project. It is also a major tool for designing and reviewing a structure all the way through the construction process with respect to health and safety and also importantly the fire aspects of the build too. This positive tool can be considered to review material installation and provides a pro-active means of identifying any clashes/conflict with respect to proposed installation, thus ensuring the sequencing that is identified during the design phase is maintained throughout the installation. It can also be used for “golden thread” information and the information required by the BSM for content and understanding for the health and safety file(s) and building management documentation.
BIM and associated building software packages are powerful digital tools for the fire management.
Unit 9 Life safety, Persons at Risk, Human Organisational Factors, Fire Alarm Psychology and Evaluating Competence.
A robust Fire Safety Management System and associated Evacuation Strategy are dependent upon many human and organisational factors. Unit 9 will provide you with sufficient knowledge to enable you to understand the following:
- The concept of Life Safety to relevant persons within or about buildings, link an Escape Plan to the psychology of ASET (Available Safety Evacuation Time) and RSET, to be able to identify potential flaws in both concepts.
- Where human factors can affect the safety of the workplace and how robust management and identification of potential human errors can reduce the risk of a fire.
- Basic fundamental theories of human reliability, motivation and behaviour, looking at Rasmussen, Taylor and Maslow, to name a few theorists
- What makes a person competent in relation to the expectations placed upon them, especially when it comes to Fire Safety and Fire Risk Management.
- Factors leading to why people may not react to a fire or fire alarm in the way they would be expected to. Also, to gain an understanding of the roles and responsibilities of the other fire duties undertaken by site personnel eg Fire Marshal/Warden, Fire safety Co-Ordinators etc. and to understand these roles in relation to the above.
Unit 10 Fire Risk Assessment
A Fire Risk Assessment is a legal requirement placed upon the Responsible Person under Article 9 of the Fire Safety Order 2005. It reinforces the requirement for the employer to make a suitable and sufficient assessment of the risk to employees and others as required under the Management of Health and Safety Regulations 1999.
Using the HSE “Identify the 5 steps required for effective Fire Risk Assessment” (MHASAW Regs 1999 Section 3) as a basis, delegates will then use other documents (PAS) and fire related information to develop an understanding of fire risk assessments.
This day will explain the importance of the protection of Life on any construction /refurbishment etc site. Explaining why the FRA process should be a continuing rolling plan of Fire Safety Management that requires content to be reviewed throughout all stages of the build.
The day will also clarify the difference between a fire strategy, fire plans, fire risk assessments and fire audits. To understand the benefits and limitations of all of these systems and associated documentation. To also understand their use, frequency, how to interpret the content and who should be competent to undertake these and how to assess competence. Importantly how to use the information contained within them and the potential impact of not using the information contained within them.
Delegates will then undertake a practical FRA which includes a walk round the “exam area” and also an interview with the Responsible Person for the FRA area, for the delegate to determine what positives can be identified alongside the opportunities for improvement. Along with feedback regarding how the auditor came across and what they achieved, but also what they missed, maybe through observation and / or questioning techniques and ensuring you develop an understanding with your auditee(s). A FRA document is then completed and submitted as part of the exam documentation.
Unit 11 Exam Presentation
Each delegate presents to the course on a pre-agreed topic with the Trainer. The presentation is undertaken under exam conditions and the presenter is expected to deliver a prepared topic for 15 minutes and can include props, digital and film materials. The completion of the exam presentation includes a question period, the total period of time is on average 20 minutes per candidate.
Unit 12 Multiple Choice and Written Exams
The candidate will then complete a 20 question multiple choice questions (10 Management & 10 Technical) followed by a 2.5 Hour written exam where the candidate completes 10 questions (5 Management and 5 Technical) with respect to content.
By the end of this course, delegates will have consolidated their learning on all units by having successfully completed the following:
- Attended all of the 12 units
- Written examination
- Multiple Choice Examination
- Practical Fire Risk Assessment
- Examination Presentation
- Dissertation minimum 8,000 words (max of 8,500 words)
On successfully completing at least 60% in each exam, the Candidate will have achieved the Diploma in Construction Fire Safety and Fire Risk Management and will receive a parchment and will be authorized to use the nominals – DCFsFRM.
N.B. Candidates have three years to complete the Diploma course and examinations. All retakes do carry an additional charge. If a candidate does not choose to undertake the exams at the end of the course, they have to have completed all of the required examinations within the three- year window and again all deferred examinations carry an additional examination charge.
All training for the Diploma is held at our training centre in Chertsey. Please read our joining instructions before attending.