Why does my IPAF/PASMA certification expire?

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When you complete either IPAF or PASMA training, you’ll be issued with the appropriate card, showing the level of training completed as well as the expiry date.

Both types of card are valid for 5 years, after which you will either need to take a refresher course or complete the full course again.

Why do the cards expire?

Both PASMA and IPAF training are serious courses, designed to ensure the safety of people working at height as well as the people around them.

For people who work at height, using mobile access towers or powered access, maintaining skills and knowledge is extremely important. Without having to refresh your training, there is no way of protecting you or your coworkers in the event that anyone is no longer clear on how everything works.

If training didn’t expire, someone who had qualified 15 years ago for a single project, and then hadn’t worked at height since then, could assemble a tower or operate a boom lift, putting themselves and others at risk. By expiring, IPAF and PASMA certification ensure that people using any kind of working at height equipment have completed the relevant course in a reasonable timescale.

Refreshing your knowledge

Re-certifying isn’t just about proving you still know how to use the equipment in question. Over the years, things change. Although mobile access equipment doesn’t change at the same pace as, for example, technology and software, that doesn’t mean nothing will have changed since you last completed your training.Best practices and industry standards also change, and supplementary equipment such as PPE, harnesses and ropes, may have improved or altered.

It’s easy to forget minor details, especially if you don’t work with the equipment everyday. So for your safety, and the safety of everyone around the work site, the expiry of your certification is a good thing.

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