In our new 5 part series, Lee Thompson goes through the details of SITMA, Sound Insulation Testing and what to do if a test fails. In our first part, Lee analyses what SITMA is and what he does for SITMA.
What is SITMA?
The Sound Insulation Testing and Measurement Association (also known as SITMA) is a third party certification scheme and sits alongside ATTMA & The Building Performance Hub under the umbrella company Building Compliance Testers Association (BCTA). The BCTA Group and incorporated companies & associations, provides certification, lodgement and data gathering, training regulation & technical support.
What is the aim and purpose of SITMA?
SITMA provides an independent and impartial way of demonstrating professional competence. This certification scheme enables an individual to be assessed and certified to carry out sound insulation testing in accordance with the home nation Building Regulations, through a professional and recognised association.
SITMA provides the construction industry with a recognised and standardised certified report to ensure compliance with the requirements of Local Governments, The Building Regulations and relevant test standards.
What does the SITMA scheme provide for members?
SITMA certifies personnel to carry out sound insulation testing and provides members with software required to complete a recognised, standardised and BS EN ISO 140-4:1998 and BS EN ISO 140-7:1998 compliant report. SITMA also provides technical and non-technical support helping to build confidence, competence & integrity in the construction testing industry.
What is required to become a SITMA member?
There are two entry routes into SITMA. Entry Route 1 is through a SITMA Approved Training Partner which can be found here
Entry Route 2 is to demonstrate advanced prior knowledge and/or experience (APEL) – two of the four criteria are required to be eligible for this route, more details can be found here
Once your entry route is sorted, you’ll also need the following for both;
- Own or rent fully UKAS calibrated sound insulated testing kit
- Hold both Professional Indemnity and Public Liability Insurance
- Undergo an audit from SITMA personnel
SITMA members are then required to operate using the SITMA framework
- Be subject to unannounced audits (a minimum of 1 a year). The applicant will be assessed to gain entry to SITMA
What are the responsibilities as a SITMA Member?
- To be qualified, certified and enabled by SITMA to carry out Sound Insulation Testing
- Have the correct equipment and have up to date full UKAS calibrated kit.
- Pre-lodge the site development address to enable to be audited
- To test correctly and follow the standard
- To report correct and transparently, this includes reporting of all tests, pass or fail!
- Test the correct amount of walls and floors depending on the size of the development and construction details.
What is NOT in the responsibilities however is to carry consultancy and remedial advice under the SITMA scheme. This goes outside the SITMA scheme scope.
What makes SITMA unique?
The SITMA Lodgement Portal is a tool we provide to our members & testers to efficiently lodge each test to create certified reports for their clients and building control bodies.
This portal ensures that each test meets the criteria specified by the Building Regulations, whilst ensuring that members equipment is the correct type and has the appropriate calibration certificates. The tool also serves as a historical record of previous testing and reporting history and falling out of date with insurance, calibration or training will stop reports being issued through the certification scheme.
Lee’s Role at SITMA
My primary role at SITMA is to provide support for our members, to answer any technical and non-technical questions, and to visit our members on-site to audit member sound insulation testing. It is important to ensure that the outcome of our audits is helpful and informative and we will always provide an explanation of any non-compliance and advise corrective action to ensure our members maintain the highest industry standards.