What is the BAFE Fire Extinguisher Technician Competency Portfolio?

A focus of the 2017 revision of the SP101 competency scheme was strengthened Fire Extinguisher Technician Competency Portfolio requirements. This underpins the BAFE on-site assessment and is crucial to a fire extinguisher technician earning the BAFE Fire Extinguisher Technician Diploma. This is required for all fire extinguisher technicians employed by BAFE SP101 Registered Organisations.

Key changes to this were as follows:

  • Additional requirements for the understanding and application of BS5306-8 (Selection and positioning of portable fire extinguishers) were added, including map/diagram elements for completion by the technician and walk around with BAFE assessor on-site.
  • Additional competency questions regarding BS5306-3 (Commissioning and maintenance of portable fire extinguishers).
  • The addition of competency requirements for Asbestos Awareness and Health and Safety training.
  • Stronger focus on technician competency with the removal of management system questions (as these elements are covered by certification body audit).

The Fire Extinguisher Technician Competency Portfolio demonstrates evidence of the industry/field skills and expertise required to competently complete the fire extinguisher works required. To continue to acknowledge BAFE SP101 fire extinguisher technicians as the best in the industry, we check they are skilled and knowledgeable in the following areas:

  • Planning and organisation (i.e. vehicle safety/appropriate equipment for customer site preparation).
  • Health and safety/environment (i.e. key duties under legislation/safety precautions).
  • Assessing fire risk and making recommendations (i.e. understanding of which extinguishers should be used/understanding of BS5306 Fire extinguishing installations and equipment on premises).
  • Installation of portable fire extinguisher equipment (i.e. mounting of extinguishers/use of power tools in buildings).
  • Service and maintenance of fire extinguishers (i.e. disposing of media/actions for unsafe or unlikely to operate extinguishers).

They must also provide documentation to demonstrate comprehensive understanding of what types of extinguisher should be used and where these should be sited. Evidence must also be provided of original/refresher certificates for the successful completion of the exam Theory and practice of servicing portable fire extinguishers in accordance with the requirements of BS 5306 Parts 3 and 8’, Asbestos Awareness and Health and Safety training. Successful completion of the Fire Extinguisher Technician Competency Portfolio, with the BAFE appointed field assessor (and signed off by BAFE), is the key element for gaining the BAFE Fire Extinguisher Diploma. Technician competency will be monitored on an ongoing basis during field assessments every three years.