Choosing the Right IPAF Course
Anyone interested in undertaking an IPAF course needs to firstly understand what the courses are for and why they need to do them. It may be that they need to successfully pass multiple courses to fulfil their job requirements, or just a single course, depending on what their role involves and the responsibilities within it.
Who are IPAF?
IPAF is a not-for-profit organisation promoting the safe use of powered access equipment on a global basis. It is the world authority in powered access and has over 1,300 members in 65 countries/regions. Formed in 1983, there are now over 700 IPAF approved training centres across the world, with more than 750,000 PAL cards in circulation.
IPAF programmes for training operators include proving technical advice, interpretation of legislation and standards as they evolve, safety initiatives and the IPAF Training Programme.
The IPAF Training Programme
The IPAF training programme has been designed and is regulated by the International Powered Access Federation (IPAF). It conforms to ISO 18878 (Mobile elevating work platforms -- Operator (driver) training) and gives platform operators proof of training via the Powered Access Licence (PAL) Card which they will receive upon successful completion of the IPAF course or courses they have undertaken.
More than 100,000 delegates are trained via IPAF courses each year, with PAL cards awarded to each successful candidate. These are valid for 5 years for each course passed. Smart PAL cards are now also available, which have a chip embedded in them and ensure that only trained operators can use mobile elevating work platforms (MEWPs) on site.
Choosing the Right IPAF Course
There are 5 different static categories to choose from depending on the type of platform you work with; these are:
• Category 1a, Static Vertical - Vertical personnel platforms (static)
• Category 1b, Static Boom - Self-propelled booms (outriggers), trailers/push-arounds, vehicle-mounted platforms
• Category 3a, Mobile Vertical - Scissor lifts, vertical personnel platforms (mobile)
• Category 3b, Mobile Boom - Self-propelled booms
• Push Around Vertical (PAV): Push around verticals
Alternatively, you may not need to choose a course from the category types; it may be that you need to choose an individual course that best suits the responsibilities of your job role.
There are a range of courses that fall into this area, including:
• Mast Climbing Work Platforms (MCWP)
• Insulated Aerial Devices (IAD)
• Tele-handler Platforms – Integrated (TPI)
• Use of Harnesses and Harness Inspection (H)
• Loading and Unloading (LOAD)
• MEWP’s for Managers (MM)
• Loading and Unloading
• IPAF Demonstrator
Each course will have last a different amount of time depending on the topic and content. The majority of courses last for one full day, but some are half days, such as the Harness Awareness course.
For further information on the range of IPAF courses we have available, all run by IPAF accredited trainers, please see the IPAF category on our website.