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Fire Safety Matters Podcast - Episode 14

20 October 2020

THE FOURTEENTH episode of the Fire Safety Matters Podcast is now available to download or stream for free. On this edition we interview Colin Todd MBE (managing director at C. S. Todd & Associates Ltd) as well as Mark Whiteley (UK and Ireland sales manager at asecos Limited), while – as a timely follow-up to Fire Door Safety Week 2020 – Warren Spencer focuses on the legalities involved with fire doors.

The Fire Safety Matters (FSM) Podcast is hosted by the magazine’s Editor Brian Sims and Western Business Media’s CEO Mark Sennett, with new editions available fortnightly on Wednesdays. The FSM Podcast is kindly sponsored by The Fire Safety Event, which takes place at the NEC in Birmingham from 27-29 April 2021.

On Episode 14, Brian engages in an in-depth conversation with one of the most popular figures in the fire safety world, namely Colin Todd (managing director at C. S. Todd & Associates Ltd, the celebrated consulting business specialising in fire safety, fire protection and fire engineering projects).

In point of fact, C. S. Todd & Associates Ltd is an independent practice providing consultancy services in respect of all aspects of fire safety to a wide range of commercial and industrial clients, not to mention social housing providers and Government Departments. The practice transacts work throughout the UK and the Republic of Ireland.

Colin founded the Farnham-based business back in 1982. His day-to-day responsibilities include the overall running of the practice, providing technical support to the consultancy team, ensuring the ongoing competency of that team, quality assurance of client deliverables and also client liaison.

Academically, Colin graduated from the University of Edinburgh back in 1974 with a Bachelor’s degree in Physics and subsequently worked at both Unilever and the Fire Offices Committee before becoming a specialist technical advisor at Bowring Risk Management.

Time for change

There’s a great deal happening in the fire safety world at the moment and, as the principal of one of the country’s leading consultancy practices, how does Colin feel consultants are coping with monitoring all of the changes taking place? Is the profession in general managing to cope with these developments to the best of its ability? Listen to Episode 14 of the FSM Podcast and find out.

Keeping abreast of changes in the fire sector is, of course, very much part of the competence piece for today’s practising professionals. In itself, competence is also a core subject that everyone’s talking about in the wake of publication of the draft Fire Safety Bill, for example. There are some important changes happening soon in terms of the Institution of Fire Engineers’ registration of competent fire risk assessors. On Episode 14 of the FSM Podcast, Colin elaborates on the fine detail.

As a long-standing practitioner, Colin is very much involved in the standards and guidance that support legislation and actively assist the fire sector and, during his interview with Fire Safety Matters’ Editor Brian Sims, offers an update on present developments across a range of key documents.

Quite rightly, many new standards have arisen in the wake of the Grenfell Tower tragedy, but it’s important to remember that other standards-focused work continues in parallel. With this in mind, Colin duly outlines the progress being made and the likely impact on sector professionals and their daily tasks.

Colin has been particularly busy this year during the lockdown period, with part of his work encompassing the revision of some of the industry-focused documents and publications that he authors or on which he has a guiding oversight. Again, he informs Brian of the progress achieved to date in this area.

Fire doors in the spotlight

When it comes to ‘all matters legal’ in relation to the fire safety world, it most certainly remains the case that there’s no better expert to turn to for advice than our regular FSM Podcast contributor Warren Spencer (managing director at Blackhurst Budd Solicitors). For those readers of Fire Safety Matters who are perhaps not aware, Warren has prosecuted more cases under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 than anyone else.

On Episode 14, Warren again chats with Mark Sennett (CEO at Western Business Media), this time about the legalities involved with fire doors in terms of who assumes responsibility for them and their maintenance, etc.

There’s also an update about the forthcoming digital conference focused on the Fire Safety Bill that’s being run as a joint venture between Blackhurst Budd Solicitors and Fire Safety Matters. Mark Sennett will be chairing this online event, which takes place between 10.00 am and 1.00 pm on Thursday 3 December and features input from Warren in addition to Joseph Hart (a barrister at the Deans Court Chambers in Manchester) and James Aird (also a member of the fire safety law team at Blackhurst Budd Solicitors).

Read more about the digital conference and book your delegate place here.

Hazardous materials storage

Our final guest on Episode 14 of the FSM Podcast is Mark Whiteley, UK and Ireland sales manager at asecos Limited, the business that’s firmly focused on hazardous materials storage and handling. The company is also recognised as a leader in the field when it comes to the manufacture of EN 14470-compliant and type-tested safety storage cabinets.

Mark has been with the business for seven years now, having previously worked at Thermo Fisher Scientific on sales of PPE and safety-related products.

Raising awareness on legislation and guidelines is a key element of the storage equation, including the provision of training to staff, specifiers and design teams, establishing multiple ranges of solutions that duly satisfy Health and Safety requirements and also looking after insurers’ expectations.

During the FSM Podcast, Mark focuses his attentions on the Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres Regulations and outlines their importance in terms of fire safety projects.

As always, the FSM editorial team delivers and analyses the latest major news impacting the fire sector here in the UK.

Listen to the FSM Podcast

You can listen to the FSM Podcast for free on iTunes, Spotify or Google Play. To download the FSM Podcast on iTunes or Spotify, all you need to do is enter the term ‘Fire Safety Matters’ into the search box of your chosen platform.

Alternatively, you can listen to the FSM Podcast online at fsmpodcast.podbean.com or via our YouTube channel by clicking here.

*If there are any specific subjects you would like to see featured in an upcoming Fire Safety Matters Podcast please do contact us. You can do so on Twitter by using the hashtag #FSMPodcast. Alternatively, send an e-mail direct to bsims@westernbusiness.media