Training & Competence
What is NESST and How will it work?
National Emergency Services Support Taskforce is a national provision of temporary works and demolition engineers plus selected trade contractors based across England and Wales. We hope the service will also expand into Scotland at some point very soon.
Its purpose is to provide pro-bono support to Incident Commanders and USAR Advisors at incidents where persons are feared or known trapped or vital local infrastructure could be compromised.
The National Resilience & Assurance Team (NRAT) and The National Resilience Fire Control (NRFC) centre in Merseyside constantly monitor fire services nationwide, deploying emergency response and rescue assets according to the nature of the response required to each specific incident. It is through this centre or directly via the contact of an on the ground UA (a USAR Advisor), that NESST is mobilised to an incident. NESST is mobilised via the dedicated 24/7 phone line. NESST will then contact the local representative to assist the UA or Incident Commander with their concerns. This could require the representative to attend the incident or support via some secure comms. This provision can last as long as the Emergency Services are responsible for the incident. Once they stand down, so does NESST. A hand-over report of actions-taken is prepared by the NESST representative and forwarded to the UA and NESST for their records and to give other members the opportunity to learn from each and every response and with this continually improve the support that NESST provides to the emergency services.
So NESST is a National provision. How many members do you will it have nationally?
There will be around 20 Corporate (Contractor) members and up to 30 individual structural or demolition engineers along with any other specialist service contractors. These will be spread around the country according to population demographics and the locations of the 21 national USAR stations.
Becoming part of NESST is clearly going to be quite an accolade. Clear recognition for competence and experience, coupled with a willingness to help others – How will you select members ?
Being a member of NESST will clearly be seen as a rather unique accolade and as such membership will follow a robust pre-qualification and selection process. We also need to balance membership across the country and for that reason selection will be based on combination of competence, suitability, commitment to respond and location.
A robust pre-qualification will be carried out and an on-line interview conducted. Members will be continually monitored against any activity and feedback will always be sought. This is one of those services you hope will not be needed, but if it is, it must be given to an exemplary standard.
NESST will have members up and down the country, will they be identifiable ? Can members make use of the NESST logo on their livery?
Yes, all members will be identifiable, we will have their names available on the NESST website. They will also be able to display the NESST logo on their websites and business livery, along with use of the acronym on business cards etc.
Will there be an annual membership charge for NESST?
We will ask corporate members to pay an annual subscription charge of £1,000 per annum, this is seen as a form of sponsorship. Individuals, consultants, engineers and demolition engineers will not be required to pay any annual fee.
NESST is a not-for-profit organisation. All revenue will be purely to cover administration costs. No salaries or other fees will be drawn, its purely voluntary with some running costs to maintain the website, provide PPE to members and provide training.
NESST responses are all pro-bono, which is a very humane and generous response to an incident. What happens with regards to insurances for the advice and help provided?
NESST members will only be asked to contribute to decisions the Incident Commander or UA (USAR Advisor) is considering. NESST members will not be underwriting their contributions.
This is the leanest way expert advice and support can reach the emergency services when they need it most. This is all about joining the command centre to contribute and assist. Sharing the benefit of members experience to aid any dynamic and strategic decision-making processes.
So how should Structural Engineers, Demolition Engineers and Contractors make contact with NESST to apply to join?
The simplest way to start a membership process is to send an email to Paul Ford or Marc Smith, explaining your experience of temporary works and any dangerous structure experience, along with a little about you. Where you live and work, and why you feel you should be a member of NESST. Paul.email@example.com or Marc.firstname.lastname@example.org
Of course, you can also visit the NESST website and make contact with me there via the Contact Us link. www.nesst-response.com
We will then send you out a membership application pack which will need to be completed and returned. Once we have a member approved we will advise that person or business and provide them with all the further information they might need. ID card, PPE etc.
Will there be specific training for NESST members ?
Yes, there will be. We have access to training days with USAR in Lincolnshire. We are able to invite up to two NESST members for each day and during that we will give members an engaging day on the training ground with our countries very finest operatives. This is real never-before full access to join the best and engage in real simulated situation resolving.
During that training we will give members a real flavour of the context of their involvement. They will hear first-hand what is likely to be asked of them. They will see the tools and equipment immediately at their disposal and get first-hand experience of the rationale and approach of Search and Rescue.
There will also be one online session each year to run through administration of incidents.
Once an incident passes from a ‘Blue-Light Phase’ and the local authority, owner or stakeholder take over responsibility does the pro-bono work end?
Yes it does. Any further works or instructions from Local Authority, stakeholder or owners are then subject to a commercial agreement between the NESST member and the engaging party. NESST plays no further role.
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