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HRAI is developing a training program that aims to prepare HVACR contractors to engage with their customers in a marketplace affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.  Developed with the generous financial support of FortisBC, the program is focused primarily on the health and safety of HVAC contractors, their employees and their customers, but will also prepare contractors and their employees to speak to the benefits and risks associated with specific HVAC technologies (ventilation, air cleaning, filtration, humidity control, etc.) that contribute to indoor air quality.

HRAI believes that training contractors on the best practices and precautions to mitigate risk, now and in the future, and on developing HVACR strategies and recommendations for clients to feel safe in their homes, will create significant benefits for the industry and its customers.  The initial focus of the training is on residential applications but there may be interest in broadening to include small commercial and ICI sectors.

HRAI is employing the services of Gord Cooke, one of Canada’s top HVACR trainers and a renowned expert on indoor air quality, to oversee this proposal and lead subsequent course development and delivery. Gord’s content and approach will be guided by a small group of technical advisors, including IAQ thought-leader Robert Bean and other relevant experts at ASHRAE.

Training will be comprised of three separate but consecutive modules. The first will be a self-guided module focused on the “Principles for Running a Business in a Pandemic” (mostly specifying the protocols for ensuring company compliance with personal and public health and safety protocols). The second session will be a scheduled, moderated webinar (virtual classroom format), led by Gord Cooke, focused on how contractors should speak to the benefits of HVACR upgrades, and the third will be a smaller virtual classroom group discussion session (where all attendees can speak to each other) focused on specific roles for HVACR contractors to play in maintaining healthy homes and buildings in a post COVID environment (humidity levels, filtration, ventilation, UV light, electrostatic, dehumidification vs cooling load design, ventilation vs heating load design and forced air system considerations).

Each module will be about two hours in duration, will include a comprehension test and will be completed in succession towards a certificate of completion from HRAI.

The course is meant to instill confidence in HVACR contractors and technicians, and in their customers, with regard to the best health and safety practices for the industry and will prepare contractors to provide sound advice to homeowners.

HRAI hopes to schedule sessions as early as the middle of July, starting in British Columbia, so stay tuned for announcements about dates and availability.