Safe Isolation Provider (SIP) Party Accession – Applications Open
What is a Safe Isolation Provider?
A Safe Isolation Provider (SIP) is an entity that will have the ability to De-Energise and subsequently Re-Energise any electricity Metering Point connected to the Distribution System of a Licenced Distribution Network Operator to allow for safe working on a Customers electrical equipment. Becoming a SIP does not grant the ability to undertake or otherwise authorise such an entity to actually carry out work on a Customers electrical equipment and any SIP that does undertake such work for a Customer needs to be satisfied that is has the appropriate skills, certifications and/or training necessary to complete any such work. A SIP may work in conjunction with an entity that has the appropriate skills, certifications and/or training necessary to complete the work which a Customer wishes to have completed at their site so as to safely isolate the Customers supply via a De-Energisation so that the the work can be carried out and then to Re-Energise the Customers supply once work has been completed. Examples of the types of work that Customers may wish to have undertaken at their site could include the installation of Isolators or Electric Vehicle charging points.
The concept of a SIP was the result of DCUSA Change Proposal (DCP) 394 ‘Allow any REC Accredited Meter Operator to De-Energise any Metering Point’ which was implemented on 29 June 2023. The effect of DCP 394 was to widen the scope of DCUSA to allow any Retail Energy Code (REC) accredited Meter Equipment Manager (MEM), in the capacity of a Safe Isolations Provider (SIP), to carry out De-energisation and Re-energisation works and if reasonably necessary adjust the terminals or terminate/replace the customer tails of the meter at metering points at which they are not the appointed MEM.
Why has the SIP role been introduced?
Currently only the Registered Supplier can instruct a Metering Equipment Manager (MEM) to work on their metering asset. There is no ability for a Customer to request that a single MEM completes work on, for example, multiple properties that may have different Electricity Suppliers. This creates barriers to developing solutions for local authorities, private and social housing landlords who are, as an example, refurbishing premises or to help any premise owner (whether domestic or non-domestic) install new equipment to facilitate Low & Zero Carbon Technology installation such as the retro-fit of Electric Vehicle Charging Points to homes and business premises.
Implementation of DCP 394 on 29 June 2023, widened the scope of the DCUSA such that an existing REC accredited MEM would be able to Accede to the DCUSA in order to put in place the necessary legal permissions between such an entity and the Licenced Distribution Network Operator and Registered Supplier so that the entity can undertake Safe Isolation Works at the request of a Customer without the need to be the Registered Suppliers’ MEM.
What works can be undertaken by a SIP Party?
SIP Parties are able to undertake ‘Safe Isolations Works’ and this is defined in the DCUSA as:
means, in respect of an Entry/Exit Point, works by a SIP Party to:
- De-energise that Entry/Exit Point;
- (if reasonably necessary) adjust the terminals of the meter and associated equipment and re-make the connection to them to make safe and remedy any disturbance of the connection that may have occurred;
- if required, terminate/replace the customer tails on the Electricity Supplier’s meter (provided that such tails must have been provided and tested by the SIP Party or the customer’s electrical engineer); and
- Re-energise that Entry/Exit Point.
How do you become a SIP Party?
There are several important requirements to be aware of and that need to have been fulfilled in order to operate a Safe Isolation Provider and we have worked with our colleagues across the relevant code bodies to create an overview of the requirements and the order in which they’ll need to happen. This overview has been published by the REC Code Manager and can be located via: https://recportal.co.uk/rec-wiki-metering/-/knowledge_base/metering/safe-isolation-provider-sip-
The link above contains more guidance as to the overall process steps and where the DCUSA Accession sits within it but as brief summary, the below sets out the headings of each of the steps:
- Accede to the REC as a Metering Equipment Manager
- Obtain accreditation to work as Metering Equipment Manager with CoMCoP
- Set up a Market Participant Identifier (MPID)
- Demonstrate the ability to successfully send and receive Market Messages through the Data Transfer Network (DTN)
- Accede to DCUSA (see below)
- Apply to BSC for a SIP Role Code (“Y”)
Acceding to DCUSA
We’ve created a diagram with a step by step overview of the end to end process of Acceding to the DCUSA (depending on the size of your screen, this will be viewable as a side panel to the right hand side or below this section of text).
Please note: you’ll require a Market Participant ID (MPID for short) assigned/reserved in the electricity Market Domain Data (MDD) catalogue and have or be in the process of applying for the market Role Code of ‘Y’ to be assigned to that MPID. If you are currently applying for your MPID and Role Code and wish to proceed with your DCUSA Accession Application at the same time, then you’ll need to provide evidence that such an application has been made and when it can be expected to be live in MDD.
Upon submitting the DCUSA Accession Application form, the DCUSA Secretariat will review the accession form to ensure that all requirements have been met, including verifying with the REC Code Manager that their records match those that have been provided in the Accession Application Form received and that the applicant is confirmed to be a REC Accredited MEM. In addition, the DCUSA Secretariat will cross reference the same details in MDD to ensure that everything is aligned.
The Application will need to be approved by the DCUSA Panel and prior to this, the DCUSA Secretariat will arrange for a blank Accession Agreement to be issued to you via DocuSign to sign. If the DCUSA Panel approve your Accession Application, then they will instruct the DCUSA Board to countersign your Accession Agreement (via DocuSign) during their meeting on the same day. Once the Accession Agreement is countersigned, you’ll receive a completion notification via DocuSign and will be able to download a copy for your records.
Once your Accession to the DCUSA is completed, the DCUSA Secretariat will notify the REC Code Manager who will update the REC Party Register to reflect the accession to SIP.
We recommend organisations wishing to accede to DCUSA to become a SIP Party read the DCP 394 Change Declaration and associated attachments which can be found here.