FPASA TECHNICAL DIVISION
INSURER PROJECTS AND REPRESENTATION
About InFIReS (Insurer Fire Impact Reduction Strategy)
The FPASA has, since its inception, conducted services of benefit to the short-term insurance industry. These services have been revised and improved over the last few years to improve the value offered to the industry. Through InFIReS, we will be able to make an even more meaningful contribution to reducing the impact of fire in the insured environment through meaningful research, projects and representation. InFIReS also helps to ensure that the short-term insurance industry continues to be provided with a recognised and credible fire safety voice and mechanism to demonstrate their commitment and contribution to improving fire safety and to reduce the impact of fire both within the industry and to society at large.
Our insurer services, under the InFIReS banner, are organised as follows:
- InFIReS resides within the Technical Division. The Technical Manager has the overall responsibility for the programme while the InFIReS Programme Manager has direct responsibility for the initiative. The work will be conducted by FPASA technical staff and other contracted-in expertise as deemed necessary.
- The InFIReS Steering Group is independently chaired and is made up of representatives from the short-term insurance industry
The key functions of the steering group will include:
- Approving the areas and scope of research, representation and other specific projects
- Monitoring progress in terms of the agreed programme of work for the year.
- Ensuring that all the fire-related projects agreed with SAIA receive adequate attention
- The Steering Group will be underpinned by three specific sub-committees:
- A Fire Service Oversight Committee dealing with the fire brigades classification project, fire service improvement initiatives, representation on fire service forums (NAFSAC, Fire Brigade Board, etc) and our National Fire Information Resource (NatFIRe) project which is aimed at improving the collection and dissemination of statistics and meaningful fire loss information.
- A Legislation, Codes and Standards Committee dealing with the NBR’s, SANS Standards and other fire safety Legislation including the OH&S Act. This group will also have input to committee drafts of SANS fire-related Standards under development or review
- A Research Project Committee providing input on reports on specific projects as required prior to finalisation and distribution. The scope of work in this regard will include specific areas of research that have been identified, fire loss reviews and fire safety guidance documents addressing fire risk reduction and fire safety management issues.
The activities of the Steering Group and Sub-Committees are also monitored by the FPASA Board of Directors.
The information and reports resulting from all InFIReS work will be communicated to short-term insurers electronically, in hard copy and via the FPASA web-site.
Examples of InFIReS initiatives
Fire brigade classification project
Fire brigades are reviewed, classified and thereafter monitored on an annual basis through weight and speed of response performance indicators. Re-assessment takes place every three to five years depending on the size and type of brigade and the annual weight and speed of response performance reviews.
The review process involves site visits to brigades during which their level of preparedness and service delivery capability is evaluated using SANS 10090 as the benchmark.
A risk-based approach is, however, used. As a result, brigades that have used other standards and models will be recognized in terms of their ability to meet the weight and speed of response targets in SANS 10090.
Summaries of the assessment processes with particular attention to overall key improvements, deficiencies and challenges experienced by the fire and emergency services in South Africa are shared with other relevant forums or organizations such as the SAIA Fire Service Investigation Steering Committee and the Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs.
National Fire Information Resource (NatFIRe) project
Working with local authority fire brigades, insurers and other relevant sources, the FPASA collects and processes relevant data to collate National Fire Loss statistics and other meaningful fire loss information on an annual basis. The National fire loss and other statistical studies and research are disseminated through the Association’s journal ‘Fire Protection’, via our web-site and on request.
Projects are undertaken to provide clarity, guidance, advice and information on topics deemed to be of interest to insurers.
Meaningful research projects undertaken in the past include the:
- development of an evaluation document and classification system for fire brigades on which the present SANS 10090 is based
- drafting of guidance documents for insurers regarding the understanding of SANS 428 and the Euroclass system for construction products used in building finishes
The scope of research projects undertaken now includes research into fires of interest and the lessons to be learnt. Research project outcomes are shared through the Association’s document series ‘Fire Point: Reports on FPASA research projects of interest to insurers.’
Insurer specific technical enquiries and requests for information are also undertaken by the FPASA library.
Insurer representation regarding legal compliance/legislation, codes/standards, best practice and fire safety and risk management in business is achieved by participation on suitable forums including:
- various SABS Technical Committees, Sub-Committees and Working Groups;
- the Fire Brigades Board and National Fire Service Advisory Committee (NAFSAC);
- SAQCC (Fire);
- relevant training/qualifications of standards generating bodies; and
- collaboration with relevant government departments such as the Department of Labour and Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs.
All InFIReS initiatives are funded from a levy received from stakeholder members as determined annually by the Association’s Board of Directors.
For any further information about the insurer project and representation services offered or to enquire about becoming a stakeholder member of the FPASA, please contact:
Telephone: 011 397 1618/19