One of the most often asked questions to our office concerns the validity of our qualifications and it seems there is still much confusion as to the different accrediting bodies and the different cards available. For example, ITSSAR, NPORS, RTITB, AITT, IPAF, ALLMI, CPCS and LEEA as well as numerous others.

There are so many different cards and certificates out there it can be difficult to keep up! The Health and Safety Executive have previously stated that there is no definitive training scheme in their opinion and providing that training is to a recognised standard then that’s good enough for them.

At Didac we are dual accredited to ITSSAR and NPORS who are both founder members of the Accrediting Bodies Association (ABA) along with RTITB and AITT. Both of our accreditations meet the HSE’s requirements and should be accepted on any UK site, however some sites do still insist on certain card schemes.

For example, Build UK is an organisation consisting of many of the major construction companies in the UK and historically they have always insisted on the CPCS card scheme for their sites. This has been very limiting to operators as the associated costs are high and the standard of training is not necessarily any better than the more affordable alternatives.

In June 2016 Build UK announced that NPORS cards would be accepted on their sites as well as CPCS cards and this was a very welcome change to their previous stance. The proviso is that the NPORS card must carry the CSCS logo to be accepted on the site. To have the CSCS logo on the NPORS card a basic site safety CSCS touchscreen test must have been previously undertaken by the candidate.

Their statement is detailed below:

“The National Plant Operators Registration Scheme (NPORS), the scheme recording plant operators’ training and assessment, has also been awarded the CSCS logo after successfully completing their audit. The scheme will now operate two card systems, one for construction related occupations which will carry the CSCS logo, and one for non-construction related occupations, which won’t.

All NPORS cards for construction related occupations now require the operative to attain an industry relevant NVQ. Transitional arrangements are being introduced for operatives whose NPORS card does not have a CSCS logo:

  • A blue Competent Operator card will be available for operatives who have achieved an S/NVQ
  • A new red Trained Operator card will be available for operatives who do not hold an S/NVQ, and will be valid for two years. During that time operatives will be required to achieve the S/NVQ for their plant occupation and move on to the blue Competent Operator card.

The changes to the CCDO and NPORS scheme not only meet CLC requirements but also give main contractors the confidence that cardholders are trained to the highest standards.”

Sadly, we have experienced problems as it seems that not all sites have been aware of the changes to the Build UK stance on the acceptable cards.

We can also offer in-house unaccredited training which also meets all your legal requirements and is delivered in the same way as the accredited training. The only drawback of this training is that it limits the certification to your own company and site.

If you have any questions on the different accreditations you can email me at [email protected] and I’ll do my best to answer them.

More details of our accreditations can be found at www.ITSSAR.org.uk or www.NPORS.com

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