Becoming an iqp for emergency lighting

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Becoming an iqp for emergency lighting

Post by localsparx »

Appreciate any help regarding becoming an independently qualified person for emergency lighting. I’ve been asked by a property manager to become an emergency lighting iqp for all their buildings.
I’ve spent close to 8 years as a maintenance electrician which included upgrading and replacing like for like emergency lighting. Carried out 90 minute tests to check for faulty fittings.
The company I worked for went out of business maybe 6-7 years ago and getting any reference is impossible.
The form seems way over the top and I know quite a few electricians that just didn’t bother in the end.
Also wondering if doing the emergency lighting course will be of much benefit when I don’t have references.

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Re: Becoming an iqp for emergency lighting

Post by AlecK »

The requirements for becoming accredited vary depending on which area(s) you want to work in.
The accreditation system , like the rest of the BWoF system, is run by territorial local authorities (TLAs), aka Councils.
Each TLA has its own system / method / forms / requirements.

Some work together, eg all the TLAs in the South Island use a common Register of IQPs, administered by Timaru District Council.
People accredited to that register can do IQP work in any of the THA areas
Others do their own thing, meaning you may need to be separately accredited to several TLAs.

You need to be able to show that you have relevant knowledge & experience.
There's no universally recognised qualification that I know of; nothing tied to NZQA
but any training that's relevant will probably help.
One thing that applies regardless of area is that the people assessing your application know nothing about emergency lighting
(or most other types of specified system ). They'll have a background in either the building code or insurance.

Some TLAs also require regular update training.
There are a number of outfits offering courses.

There's a big difference between doing inspection / maintenance on E/L systems and being an IQP.

Part of that is that IQPs have to know the relevant requirements, and will generally be required to have copies of the Standards.
Whereas I&M people just have to work to the requirements specified in the Compliance Schedule for each building.
That means having a whole library, because the rules for each system are those of the time the system was originally installed.
Also there are often different Standards specified for I&M than for performance; so the IQP needs both.
It doesn't help that many TLAs specify inappropriate Standards in the CSs they issue.

You'll also need to swot up on all the relevant Sections of the Building Act, Building Code,
and the Building (Specified Systems, Change the Use, and Earthquake-prone buildings) Regulations.
Another one you need is the Compliance Schedule Handbook ussued by MBIE.
That's supposed to guide TLAs in writing CSs - and IQPs in making recommendations to fix the stuff-ups that TLAs make.
If you're good with electrical rules, this side shouldn't be too hard; unlike the standards these documents are all free to download.
At least the current versions are; getting older versions of the Code (that are relevant to older buildings) is more difficult.

And again there are people offering courses in how the system is supposed to work.
That's fine as long as the people running the course actually know their stuff (what are their quals ? ex-Council shiny-bum?);
and as long as the TLA for the area thinks the same way - some have some very strange interpretations that are not actually based in the law.

We're talking about a regime that simply doesn't allow for anything other than "everything is perfectly OK".
There is absolutely NO provision for any routine inspections being missed, or for a system that isn't fully functional.
The CoC (same name, different cert) MUST say "all checks were done, and the system is 100%"
Some TLAs accept alternative documents; but that's operating outside the law.
For Covid 19 lock-down last year, MBIE knocked up some alternative forms - but while it was a practicable solution, even these have no legal basis.
Which just demonstrates the huge disconnect between the system outlined in the Act, and real life.

Plus you'll need to carry a significant amount of PL & PI insurance;
'cos if anything goes wrong someone will be trying to say it's your fault: and your lawyer needs to be better (more expensive) than theirs

If that sounds like how you want to spend a lot of time, much of it non-chargeable ; good luck.
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Re: Becoming an iqp for emergency lighting

Post by gregmcc »

I done it for both Auckland and Hamilton, there were a few hoops to jump thru for Hamilton not too hard to achieve, For Auckland was a real mission, ended up going on the IQP course, had to demonstrate that I had all the forms and paperwork set up, it took multiple attempts as the attitude was taken that "it is wrong" without been detailed on what was wrong. It was quite an expensive exercise (lucky the company I worked for paid for everything).

I guess you need to make sure that the whole exercise is cost effective as unless you do a lot of IQP work you may not recuperate your expenses.
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Re: Becoming an iqp for emergency lighting

Post by localsparx »

Thanks guys.
I’m definitely going to get my money back and will be a monthly amount I can count on as property manager asks for monthly checks as well as general maintenance on all other car park & communal lighting.
Will attend the iqp course and go from there
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