Last Week PCA Technical Manager for Invasive Weeds, Peter Fitzsimons, completed his NPTC ‘Knapsack spraying’ certificate (PA1/PA6aw). This has helped Peter understand more about the standards used to assess Japanese knotweed technicians. These tests are a statutory requirement for the use of herbicides etc. in the weed control sector.
Peter said “Having now completed the NPTC course I am more convinced than ever that the wood protection industry can really benefit from the same level of training and awareness being adopted and embraced.”
Over 30 years ago the HSE decided a certification scheme was NOT required for timber treatment technicians and the situation today remains the same. Yet, it is abundantly clear from the legislation (old and new) that anyone using biocides must demonstrate they have the necessary training, knowledge and competence to ‘Use Biocides Safely’.
The PCA have taken the initiative to ensure that all our members, whether dealing with knotweed or dry rot can achieve a professional qualification. Our new course on the Safe Use of Biocides for Professional Users leads directly to inclusion on our Professional Users of Biocides Register once a short theory assessment is passed. The course content can be viewed here and further details can be obtained by contacting the office.
A final word from Peter “Quite apart from the duty-of-care aspect a key objective of the course is to enable all timber treatment technicians to gain recognition for their skill and knowledge, something which gives them pride in what they do. It’s a win-win situation!”