FPA code of practice for fire safety with solar panel installation


In the UK the incidence of fires involving PV systems is very low. However, the addition of a PV system to a building, which is not correctly designed, installed, or maintained could, like any electrical service, add to the overall risk of fire.

As such, RISCAuthority, Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS), and Solar Energy UK (SEUK) have worked together to update the RC62 document: Recommendations for fire safety with photovoltaic panel installations (first published in 2016) to develop a freely available Joint Code of Practice.

This technical guide focuses on fire safety for commercial and industrial rooftop mounted PV installations, with the aim of providing an updated practical guide for insurers and their clients on the requirements for the procurement, ownership, operation, and maintenance of safe and efficient PV systems.

Ian Rippin, CEO of MCS commented: “This new edition of RC62 will help solar contractors to safeguard against and mitigate fire risk at all stages of an installation. Working alongside the FPA and SEUK to realise these changes, we have been able to ensure that safety remains paramount when it comes to solar, that contractors are protected when installing and, ultimately, that consumers have confidence in home-grown energy.”

Gemma Grimes, Director of Policy and Delivery at Solar Energy UK said: “The commercial rooftop solar industry is poised for significant growth in the UK, as businesses turn to onsite generation to provide financial stability and reduce their climate impact. This new edition of RC62 means they and their insurers can have confidence in their systems, knowing they have been installed based on the most up-to-date practices possible. As such, we endorse and recommend that the insurance industry uses this new edition of RC62 as a guide to fire risk prevention in UK solar systems.”

Adrian Butler, Principal Consultant at the FPA added: “RISCAuthority have been pleased to work with solar industry professionals in the development of this new edition of RC62, providing a comprehensive Joint Code of Practice for solar PV specifiers, designers, suppliers, operators, and insurers. This guide will be further supported by a RISCAuthority Need to Know Guide: Roof Mounted PV Solar Systems, due to be published by the Fire Protection Association this spring.”

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Louis Curtis
Editor, International Fire Buyer
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