Editor, IFSEC Global

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James Moore is the Editor of IFSEC Global, the leading resource for security and fire news in the industry. James was previously Editor of Professional Heating & Plumbing Installer magazine.
September 23, 2020

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“Sharing best practice is critical in tall buildings crisis management”


     Andy Baker, QPM, LLB (Hons), AKC

IFSEC Global chats to Andy Baker, QPM, LLB (Hons), AKC, and former Head of Security at The Shard, about what attendees can expect from the opening day of this year’s Tall Building Fire Safety Conference, which Andy is set to chair.

As former Head of Security at London’s Shard and several roles in the Met Police, amongst other roles, Andy Baker knows a thing or two about crisis management. Andy will be chairing the first day of this year’s Tall Building Fire Safety Conference on Wednesday 30 September, with the theme of Crisis Management in Tall Buildings. We find out a little more about Andy, why he got involved with the highly anticipated event, and what attendees can look out for.

You can book your spot, here.


IFSEC Global: Tell us a bit about your yourself and your background in the industry.

Andy Baker: I am a former Senior Detective in the Metropolitan Police and was the first Chief Police Officer (Commander) to be appointed to concentrate solely on murders committed in London. I was also one of the very few senior officers to be Kratos trained (giving authority in terrorist situations) and part of the senior officer on-call cadre for London.

I was then appointed as Deputy Director in the Serious Organised Crime Agency/National Crime Agency, where I held lead roles for the UK on investigations, surveillance, covert operations and child sexual exploitation. Following this, I was headhunted as Head of Security at The Shard, the United Kingdom’s tallest building.

All these roles required me to manage crises and critical incidents daily. In my policing roles we defined critical incidents and introduced gold groups. At The Shard, I refined the Emergency Response Plans into an Incident Response Plan and introduced gold and silver groups.

I am a member of the HiRig which is a group of professionals who manage, and service tall buildings and I chair a sub-group on Urban Climbers.

How did you come about getting involved in the Tall Building Fire Safety Conference?

I attended a course on fires in tall buildings and subsequently joined the alumni. Russ Timpson, Director and organiser of the event, approached me and asked if I would chair the conference.

What are you looking forward to covering in the Crisis Management Conference on 30 September?

I am looking forward to chairing the day, sharing knowledge and experiences and hearing the presentations. I will personally present on key areas of managing critical incidents in tall buildings.

Why is it important for companies to consider their crisis management strategy?

It is so important that businesses are able to identify and deal with critical incidents. Owners, building managers, service providers, occupying companies and employees have a duty of care for others and require or should adhere to Business Continuity Plans (BCPs) or similar. It is therefore important that we share best practice and knowledge and this conference is a great medium to do just this.

What upcoming trends do you see within crisis management?

You’ll be best to find that out during the event!

I will discuss upcoming trends at the conference and know that the expert panel and speakers will share their views on such. I encourage anyone owning, managing, servicing, occupying or working in a tall building to sign up for the conference.

Secure your place at the Crisis Management in Tall Buildings event on Wednesday 30 September, part of the Tall Building Fire Safety Conference, by clicking the link below. Topics set to be covered include security and crisis mindedness; crisis command in tall buildings; virtual reality crisis simulation; risks from drones; and much more!

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