New applications for fire sprinkler installer CRO card to close

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SKILLcard has begun the next phase of the planned closure of CRO application routes following the withdrawal of the CRO card for Medical Equipment Installers

The second route to begin closure is the Fire Sprinkler Installer card. The closure applies only to new applications at this stage. A new qualification route is now open in order to obtain a blue SKILLcard for that occupation.

The phase-out of CRO cards is happening in order to deliver the Construction Leadership Council’s (CLC) 2025 vision. As a result, card schemes carrying the CSCS logo including SKILLcard, must only certify those occupations with nationally recognised construction related qualifications, i.e. NVQs or approved equivalents.

The project, expected to take a number of years, must identify paths for those affected occupations to be signposted to an agreed industry qualification for that occupation.

Fire sprinkler installers

SKILLcard are no longer accepting new applications for the Fire Sprinkler Installer CRO card as of 23 June 2019. New applicants can now apply for a blue SKILLcard for which a new qualification route is now open.

SKILLcard has worked closely with BAFSA (British Automatic Fire Sprinkler Association) to provide a new recognised qualification, IQ Level 2 Certificate in Fire Sprinkler Installation (QCF).

Ruth Oliver, BAFSA skills & qualifications adviser, said: “We have developed a comprehensive qualification route which allows Fire Sprinkler Installers to demonstrate their competence via a formal qualification pathway.

“We offer a full course for individuals with less than 4 years’ experience. However, we have also recognised the value of time served professionals and as such also offer an experienced worker qualification for those with 4 years or more verifiable experience.”

You can find out more and details of both courses and their dates at bafsa.org.uk.

Existing cardholders can, at this time still renew their Fire Sprinkler Installer CRO card. However, the renewal route will close at some point in the future, the date of which is yet to be confirmed. However, when considering renewal, cardholders may choose to undertake the new qualification which will enable them to apply for a blue SKILLcard.

Duncan Sibbald, head of certification at BESA, added: “This is the start of an important journey for the CRO card. We will be doing everything we can to make the transition as smooth as possible, supporting our cardholders every step of the way and we are delighted that we have been able to work in partnership with BAFSA and can now offer a skilled worker SKILLcard for those working in the installation of fire sprinklers.

“Ultimately this is not just about supporting the CLC vision but improving our industry and the outcomes for clients across the built environment.”

At this point, only Medical Equipment Installers and Fire Sprinkler Installer CRO cards are affected. SKILLcard are reassuring all CRO cardholders that their current card remains valid until the expiry date shown on the card.

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