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Ladder Licence .. Fact or Fiction?

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So... after working in many venues some have now started asking for a 'Ladder License'

Now I know you can do IPAF but this is a completely different thing considering it's for towers and scissor lifts etc.

Am I right?

Is there such thing as a 'Ladder License' that allows the holder to scale a set of Zarges??


And if so.. how does the law currently stand?

Is it compulsory? or just some training that looks good to potential employers?


Look forward to your replies!

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You're looking in the wrong section - but a quick 'ladders' into the search box brings back hundreds of posts on the subject of ladders - in fact, I'd guess that posts about ladders being banned for one reason or another, are one of the most popular questions. Here in training and quals, I guess the short answer would be to say simply that there are plenty of training courses around the country that will give you a 'certificate', but most are simply a statement that you've demonstrated competence, awarded to you by somebody experienced. That, of course, is all that even the most zealous health and safety robot requires. Competence is the word they have drummed into them - so that's what they're after.


There is no proper accredited qualification I'm aware of that is centred on ladders. Most firms run their own if they decide they need them.


In some areas, like powered access kit - their industry associations run standardised training which becomes a standard, because the industry trust it - but these are still essentially private initiatives. Where the Government get involved, they usually fudge it by citing 'recognised bodies, such as ...' rather neatly passing responsibility to others. The only organisation that has taken this one stage further that I'm aware of is PLASA, who have some of their training now approved as being a 'real' qualification in the same way school and college ones are.


If you go to a venue who ask for a ladder certificate - it shows a little misunderstanding perhaps, but it's their venue and how else would they prove a stranger is a 'competent person'.


I've seen plenty of certificates in places I visit that appear to be templates from things like Word, Corel Draw, Serif etc.



Moderation: Unless anyone has specific comments about ladder training, it may be best to consider adding to one of the other ladder topics found via the top right Google search the Blue Room Box

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Guest lightnix

Have a look at this recent thread.


In summary: There is no such thing as a "Ladder Licence" - the same way there is no such thing as a "Cherry Picker Licence". There are training courses you can undertake, which will give you certificates that can be presented to others, as evidence of competence achieved through training.


That said, such certificates are not nationally recognised qualifications and may be turned down in some types of venue.


The most popular ladder training scheme in the UK at the moment is the PASMA course.

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Sorry but I have to add to this


If you are working within an education institute unless you are an external contractor you need a working at Heights Qualification. This is different for different councils and some don't even enforce the rule but some do


B-) I have worked for a School for a while and its a right pain. :D

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Sorry Adza - this is simply NOT true.


Schools and colleges make their own rules. They also have a license to offer recognised qualifications - and

working at Heights Qualification
is not one. As Lightnix said, it's just a piece of paper saying that at the time somebody checked, you were competent.


I can give you dozens of examples of schools and colleges who manage working at height perfectly well with simple, sensible precautions. I can cite others that don't even allow one rung up on a step ladder.


It's not even insurance companies - it's always ill informed heavy handed rules implemented by people who do not understand the risk assessment process. It then gets passed on as 'rules' or even 'laws'.


Individual school can implement whatever rules they want - but don't blame the system, or the industry - blame your own workplace.


The other thing is that there is even some doubt as to if education actually is work? So it could well be the legislation applies to the staff but not the students, who have their actions made the responsibility of the staff.


If one place can have insurance for their kids doing the Flying Trapeze, flying through the air attempting to grab the next handhold - and another can't even get a foot off the ground, then somebody has really got this protection thing badly wrong!


It is not a case of enforcing a rule - there is no such rule to enforce. The issue is simple competence, that is all!


My own view is a bit blunt - if you are not competent to supervise and manage young people using industry standard access equipment, then perhaps it would be best to not even try - scrap lighting and do something less dangerous!


As the Government representatives keep saying - they don't ban things, they just want them understood and monitored.


Schools simply take the easy way out and ban it - then look for some agency to blame.

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Guest lightnix
B-) I have worked for a School for a while and its a right pain. B-)

Maybe it has more to do with your age than your apparent or claimed ability

Indeed, I thought he was studying at a 6th form college :D

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"The other thing is that there is even some doubt as to if education actually is work? So it could well be the legislation applies to the staff but not the students, who have their actions made the responsibility of the staff."


Yup! Staff, including caretakers etc, are governed by HASAWA 1974 'cos they are "at work" and students have to do what they are told 'cos they are not "at work", therefore not responsible parties, to paraphrase the DCFS and HSE. Thus whatever the staff decides are the rules are indeed the rules, 'cos they are the responsible ones. Ill-informed maybe, pedantic for sure, but still responsible in law.

If an employer in the wider industry decided to use WaH/PASMA certificates as "permits to work" they would then take on the same authority as a licence because PTW's are legally binding "safe systems of work", so a school could in theory use them in the same manner.


Sorry for the pedantic diversion and back to the OP; ladder licences are fiction.......unless the boss decides otherwise.

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