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The latest news and information from Steadfast Security

 

Steadfast safety inquiries surge after Grenfell

by Graeme Anderson
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THE Steadfast Group has reported a surge in smoke detector and fire alarm installation inquiries in the North East in the wake of the Grenfell Tower disaster.

Calls since the fire in mid-June have come from a range of businesses and not just those with multi-storied premises, as companies review their procedures.

Ian Harbord, head of systems at Steadfast, said: “You would understand anyone involved with tall buildings looking into their safety procedures but we are seeing it across the board and I don’t think that’s a bad thing.

“What happened in Camden at Grenfell was a national disaster and our hearts go out to all who have lost and suffered.

“But as we saw with the Hillsborough inquiry in football and other examples is that when you have an awful tragedy like this, lessons are finally learned and huge efforts are made by Government and local authorities, companies and individuals to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

“What we’ve seen in our small way is an effort to make sure potential fire hazards are being properly looked at.”

Steadfast supplies security and CCTV cameras to business across the region and beyond but also installs smoke detectors and state-of-the-art fire alarm systems and is offering a free fire risk check to any business looking to review its’ fire safety risks.

The company is also taking fire training of its’ own security guards to a higher level with additional training planned.

Paul Harbord, director of security at Steadfast said: “Our guards are often the first responders on the scene at any event on premises and as such they have to be highly trained for every scenario.

“But in the wake of Grenfell we want to take that to a higher level and this week we have booked more than a dozen guards onto an intensive fire safety and warden course leading to certification.

“The courses will be rolled out across the company with a dozen or so guards at a time over the next few weeks to ensure all our guards are experts in terms of the correct way to deal with fire outbreaks and hazards.”

Any companies or local authorities, who would like free health checks of property and premises can call Steadfast on 0191 518 0837 or email: contact@steadfastsecurity.co.uk.

Steadfast also supplies fire security wardens to properties or high-rise towers.




Steadfast Group guards’ quick-thinking helps save drowning man

by Graeme Anderson
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TWO brave and resourceful Steadfast Group security guards saved the life of a drowning man off Hartlepool’s Headland.

Harry Jones and Jason Cooke were providing security for Hall Construction, which is repairing the sea wall at the Headland, when Harry spotted a man in the water.

They used scaffolding from the site as a makeshift ladder to reach the stricken man whose boat had capsized while fishing with his young nephew on Saturday, April 22.

Harry held the top of the pole in place while Jason edged down the rocks and helped pull the man to safety.

 

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Steadfast Security’s Jason (left) and Harry, holding the scaffold pole they used in their rescue (pic courtesy of Hartlepool Mail)

 

That wasn’t the end of the rescue though because hypothermia was setting in and after helping pull him out of the water Harry and Jason acted fast to warm him up.

Harry, 64, from Blackhall, said: “At first I thought it might be debris but then I realised it was a person and nearby there was a capsized boat with another person clinging to it.

“I shouted for Jason and we ran down towards the water, we kept calling the coastguard but couldn’t get through because everyone else was calling them, having spotted the same incident.

“It was deep where he was and the tide was coming in. It was quite a height and the tide was hitting the sea wall.”

Eventually they got the distressed man, from Bishop Auckland and aged in his late 30s, out of the water and into a warm cabin where they removed his freezing clothes and wrapped him in coats to get his circulation flowing again before the ambulance arrived.

Jason, of Horden, added: “The coastguard managed to rescue the other person who was hanging on to the boat for dear life.

“But when they got to us they said we had done exactly the right thing in terms of preventing him suffering hypothermia.

“If he hadn’t got out of the water he could have drowned but if we hadn’t kept him warm he could have died of the cold.”

Paul Harbord, Steadfast security director, who passed on a reward from the company of football tickets and shopping vouchers, said: “They were really quick-thinking with the ladder idea. The lads did a great job and they went above and beyond and they are exactly the calibre of guards we want at our company.”

The incident was part of a major rescue operation, involving Hartlepool Coastguard Rescue Team, the RNLI and a pilot vessel, which was launched after a member of the public heard desperate cries for help coming from the boat.

A 999 call reported a small upturned boat and two people waving and shouting for help, close to the lighthouse.

The casualty’s nephew was taken to the lifeboat station before both were taken to University Hospital North Tees where they were treated for secondary drowning caused by water getting into the lungs.

Well done Harry and Jason for showing such alertness and quick-thinking.




Steadfast group supplies military veterans’ charity with auction gifts

by Graeme Anderson
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GIFTS of a signed Sunderland shirt and signed Sunderland match ball have been donated by The Steadfast Group this week as part of efforts to raise money for military charity Veterans At Ease.

The items will be auctioned off as part of a major money-raising drive at the Mayor of Durham’s Civic Dinner at Durham Town Hall this Friday.

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And Steadfast managing director Michael Harbord says the company is thrilled to be supporting such a worthy cause.

County Durham-based Steadfast is one of the top 50 security guard companies in the country, providing manned and electronic guarding to dozens of businesses across the country.

And many of their personnel – right up to boardroom level – have military and police backgrounds.

Veterans At Ease is a small locally-based charity which does tremendous work in the community to help veterans overcome the traumas of war after serving their country.

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It has made a massive impact on the lives of many ex-servicemen – helping veterans, reservists, serving military personnel and their families deal with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and other combat stress-related issues.

The charity, which will help anyone who feels they need our support – whether they have been diagnosed with PTSD or not – has three offices, one in Jarrow (South Tyneside), one in Durham City (County Durham) and one in Newton Aycliffe (South Durham, Tees Valley).

Therapy is provided free of charge by trained therapists (all of whom have suffered themselves, been through treatment with Veterans at Ease and then gone on to qualify as therapy practitioners themselves).

Michael Harbord, who will be offering his support at the Civic Dinner, said: “It’s a tremendously worthwhile cause and one close to our own hearts.

“When we heard the Mayor of Durham, Cllr Edward Bell was holding his dinner in aid of Veterans At Ease, we were only too happy to help.

“We provide the security for the Stadium of Light and Academy of Light at Sunderland Football Club and as part of our partnership with them we have been able to give donate items which are highly sought after to the auction.

“Ironically, Steadfast will also be discreetly providing security for the event on the night, so we are supporting the Mayor’s Civic Dinner in more ways than one!”

Evidence has shown that the majority of servicemen and women do not seek help with regard to combat-related stress issues until 10 to 14 years after the event.

Considering the UK’s recent military commitments in Iraq, Northern Ireland and Afghanistan, the figure for those potentially suffering from their experiences whilst on active service is substantial.  And recent estimates show that as many as 90,000 people could be affected by PTSD in the North East alone.

Symptoms of PTSD include social isolation, paranoia, anger, depression, flashbacks and nightmares with suicide resulting in some cases.

Further information on the charity can be found at: http://www.veteransatease.org/.




NORTH EAST SECURITY COMPANY BREAKS INTO UK’S TOP 50

by Graeme Anderson

THE STEADFAST GROUP has been ranked in the TOP 50 security companies in the UK for the first time.

The County Durham-based company, now in charge of  security at Sunderland Football Club sites, was given the ranking by The Security Industry Authority – the Government watchdog which carries out site visits and a series of stringent tests of security companies.

The news is a massive boost to the firm, founded two decades ago, which only broke into the top 100 on its previous inspection but now has a nationwide reach.

The SIA assessment represents the gold standard in the industry and only the best earn the Approved Contractor certificate which Steadfast now has for work on manned guarding of premises and electronic and CCTV surveillance.

Last year SIA points rating saw Steadfast break into the top 100 UK security companies and this year’s assessment marks an improvement of more than 10 per cent overall.

Steadfast managing director Michael Harbord said: “We are thrilled by this latest result, it is credit to everyone involved in the company

“The main thing is to earn the SIA certificate in the first place because that’s the documentation all security companies should have.

“But once you achieve it, the SIA goes on to give you points totals which show where you stand in its rankings.

“For us to break into the top 100 security companies a couple of years ago and this year the top 50 is fantastic for us and shows we’re getting bigger and better all the time.

“But we don’t want to stop there.

“The incentive now is to keep on improving and the quality of our SIA assessment can only help contribute to that because the tests are so thorough and rigorous and set the benchmark in our industry.

“Before any company considers security at their premises – manned or electronic – it is always worth them checking their contractors are SIA compliant and if they are SIA approved contractors, all the better.”

The Security Industry Authority is the organisation responsible for regulating the private security industry.

It is a UK-wide independent body reporting to the Home Secretary, under the terms of the Private Security Awards Act 2001

It has two main duties.

One is the compulsory licensing of individuals undertaking designated activities within the private security industry; the other is to manage the voluntary Approved Contractor Scheme, which measures private security suppliers against independently assessed criteria.

SIA licensing covers manned guarding (including security guarding, door supervision, close protection, cash and valuables in transit, and public space surveillance using CCTV), key holding and vehicle immobilising.

Licensing ensures that private security operatives are ‘fit and proper’ persons who are properly trained and qualified to do their job.

The SIA’s Approved Contractor Scheme introduced a set of operational and performance standards for suppliers of private security services.

Those organisations that meet these standards are awarded Approved Contractor status.

This accreditation provides purchasers of private security services with independent proof of a contractor’s commitment to quality.