First Response Group at heart of nation’s fight back against Covid-19

A First Response Group security guard

First Response Group (FRG) has been at the heart of the nation’s fight against coronavirus after being brought in by the University of Oxford to bolster security at its Covid-19 research facility.

FRG was recommended for the highly important security detail after successfully demonstrating its expertise and reliability with the University during the first national lockdown.

Founded in 2007 by directors Jamal Tahlil, and Edgar Chibaka, FRG provides security, fire and facilities management services to a wide range of clients in the public and private sectors.

The Covid-19 Oxford Vaccine Trial is run by the University’s Jenner Institute and the Oxford Vaccine Group clinical teams, and is conducted in collaboration with multiple study sites across the UK and internationally, including a temporary research installation on the University grounds.

After a full site risk assessment, FRG recommended a 24/7 manned security detail consisting of three security officers during the day and two at night, to ensure robust protection for the trial patients, research staff and the sensitive clinical data.

FRG’s SIA (Security Industry Authority) licensed security officers control all entrances and exits through the facility day and night. While safeguarding the safety and integrity of the project, FRG security officers also ensure distancing measures are followed, challenge antisocial behaviour and monitor the area for suspicious activity.

To ensure fast and consistent communication with the University, FRG implemented a dedicated site supervisor providing a senior level FRG presence onsite Monday to Friday.

The site supervisor acts as the main onsite point of contact for the University, dealing with any issues as they arise in real time.

Oto Velička, Senior Buildings and Facilities Manager, University of Oxford, said: “I would like to thank First Response Group for the outstanding quality of service they provide for our COVID-19 vaccine trial at the University of Oxford.

“When we approached them asking for support, their management team immediately engaged with us on a highly professional level and was able to scope, suggest and implement a made-to-measure solution perfectly suiting our needs.

“Their onsite team is highly competent, professional, cooperative and with a comprehensive understanding of our business needs and sensitivity of our activity.

“They have proven over and over that we can rely on them with all our security needs, bringing complete peace of mind to our operation 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”

Simon Alderson, First Response Group CEO, said: “Without question, this has to be one of the most high-profile security operations we have been involved in, one of world-wide importance.

“Being chosen to support the University of Oxford in this clinical trial is a ringing endorsement of FRG, and a clear demonstration of our leading status within the UK security sector.

“It is an honour to have played a part in ensuring the security of the vaccine, staff and trail patients in the lead up to its national roll out.”

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