Part of the international SUEZ Group, SUEZ UK has been a leader in recycling, waste, and water management since 1988. SUEZ UK is looking to the future now, pioneering sustainable solutions and innovative technologies to make the circular economy a reality. At the heart of culture at SUEZ lies health and safety; striving to continually improve work conditions and positively impact health and safety for all.
Craig Alderton, Head of Technical, Process Optimisation & Mobile Plant – Operations at SUEZ UK, is responsible for fire suppression systems supplier selection and relationship management.
Waste & Recycling
Ardent Dual Agent System
With hundreds of machines across many sites, and a number of different fire suppression solutions in place, Craig undertook a review of the SUEZ UK situation and a thorough technical assessment of providers to understand their competencies and capabilities to support the business.
“Selecting an appropriate fire suppression system is a complex topic and something that is difficult to assess. Are you wasting or saving money? Without a fire you never really know! But fundamentally, as a business you need to make sound decisions based on each system’s technical information, as well as investigating the service and support capabilities of each supplier,” said Craig.
Each SUEZ UK site is supported individually, with different working hours, shutdown periods and processes. This means that suppliers visiting the sites need to understand the health & safety standards, PPE requirements and processes for each site, as well as complete inductions. SUEZ UK required a provider that could handle this complexity and streamline the service process.
“At SUEZ UK, we had determined we required a dual agent system and had three suppliers in the shortlist to assess. What was clear was that no amount of accreditation or certification of a system was going to assure our business of capability and performance. We therefore conducted a technical deep drill across technology, install, service and support services before making any decisions on which system and provider would supply the entire business,” said Craig.
The Ardent team stepped up to the challenge providing extensive system specification data – comparing and contrasting the different technologies available – as well as insight to the installation process and support that SUEZ UK could expect from the business.
For example, Ardent knows that operator training is a key factor in the success of a fire suppression system. The Technical Team delivered onsite training on how the system worked and what to do in the instance of a fire to ensure that the SUEZ UK operators would be fully protected. In addition, the team demonstrated the key checks operators should carry out to ensure their systems are proactively maintained and ready to perform at all times.
Due to the large number of sites involved, Ardent also committed, wherever possible, to send the same member of the Field Engineering Team to a site for system servicing each time. This meant that the Engineer is well-versed in each site’s procedures and has received the site induction, streamlining the process for both businesses, saving time and driving up service efficiency.
Finally, Ardent placed two Account Managers – Jamie Whitham and Emma Kirk – onto the SUEZ UK account to develop strong working relationships, alongside the Ardent Engineers. Emma was able tailor systems to each site’s conditions, across energy recovery sites to wood processing facilities and household waste recycling sites. Acting as the main point of contact, Jamie is then always ready to support Craig and the SUEZ site teams, which has helped to build a strong partnership based on mutual trust and understanding.
"We chose the Ardent system for its superior reliability and protection against false discharges. The Linear Heat Detection cable means our operators can have confidence that the system is functioning when it needs to be. But our selection was also about the relationship we could build with the Ardent team. Their ethical approach to doing business, their honesty, openness, and integrity has been key in their success. It’s a good team and we have a great working relationship built on trust and they are highly responsive to our needs, which is very much appreciated,” concluded Craig.
SUEZ UK selected Ardent as their standard choice for fire suppression, and as they look towards the future, we will work to support them every step of the way.