Aside from a whole host of great security related content, we feature several articles that look at different aspects of Fire Safety and Prevention. I’d like to say a huge thank you to our special guest editor, and renown fire industry expert and safety campaigner, Stephen Mackenzie, for giving up so much of his valuable time to ensure that our content was ‘on point’.
As Stephen would no doubt agree, fire safety is one of the most critical aspects of any security officer’s duties. Numerous recent high profile incidents have served to dramatically highlight this fact. A five minute search on the internet produced a long list of international disasters and fire related tragedies, many of which could have been avoided by proper procedures being in place or the correct equipment being fitted or available. No mention of fire related tragedy can be made without reference to the Grenfell disaster in North West London in 2017. A fire where 72 people lost their lives. Sadly, a fire that, if the correct equipment would have been fitted and building standards adhered too, should never have caused much more than a burnt out kitchen.
As a security officer, testing of the fire safety equipment at your place of work may not be your responsibility, however so much else is. Closing fire doors at night, ensuring that fire escape routes and stairways are clear and unobstructed, checking that fire fighting equipment is where it should be and regular tests of the fire alarm system, and evacuation drills, are certainly going to be a vitally important part of your duties. All of these things can seem mundane, but get it wrong, and fail to spot or deal with an issue, can be the difference between a fire causing minor damage, or something with a far more tragic outcome.
But we all know how important our jobs are.
So this big news needs a mention.
What we haven’t had before is any organisation singing our praises, and working on our behalf, to make the security industry better…. There is now!
The Guild of Security Industry Professionals has been set up by the people behind this magazine! (There’s a big article all about it later in this issue.) It is a peer support network, run by front line security officers for the benefit of our front line colleagues across the UK. It’s free to join, and for the first 12 months membership. It has huge support from across the industry and is working hard to give the 400,000ish men and women working at the coal face of the industry, a voice at last. Check it out.