In your weekly PCA update this week:
- Audits & COVID-19 Risk Assessments
- BS 5250 – Draft Open for Public Comment/li>
- Review of UK National Action Plan
- Environment Agency Publishes 5-Year Plan
- Exams are back up & running!
- A return to Monthly CPD Webinars
- HSE ‘Spot Checks’
- Mental Health Remote Training Courses
Audits & COVID-19 Risk Assessments
We recently informed members about how our audit process has changed during the pandemic, and therefore our Technical Managers will be arranging a call (via Zoom) to hold them remotely. Ultimately, by continuing the audits means we can continue to give consumers peace of mind when choosing a PCA member.
Given the Coronavirus crisis, we have expanded the audit process and will be looking at the systems that members have implemented to safeguard themselves, their employees and the public against the spread of COVID-19. This will include looking for Risk Assessments and training for all members of staff on the processes in place to protect the occupants. HSE have a wealth of helpful information available which includes risk assessment templates and guides.
Adopting different strategies is another example of how the Association and its members have continued to raise standards. How many other Trade Associations can say the same…?
BS 5250 – Draft Open for Public Comment
BS 5250: Code of Practice for Management of Moisture in Buildings (originally Code of Practice for Control of Condensation in Buildings) has now been issued for public comment and will be open for comments until 9 September 2020.
The extended scope of this revision means it will be relevant to many PCA members (damp control, ventilation, structural waterproofing) and has the potential to be a very influential document.
Your Association was consulted during the drafting period of this document and have raised a number of concerns regarding its content. We will be formally responding but as this will affect you, we would encourage all PCA members who deal with moisture in buildings to do so too. The draft can be found on the online standards development portal via the button below.
Review of UK National Action Plan
The UK Government has produced a National Action Plan (NAP) for the Sustainable Use of Pesticides (Plant Protection Products). The document sets out how the UK regulates, controls, and limits the use of pesticides and whilst it was published some time ago, is now under review.
Your Association has been involved in a number of discussions hosted by Government and the Amenity forum, as part of a periodic review of the document. This work is essential in helping the Government understand the state of the art and formulate policy around the safe and sustainable use of pesticides in the amenity sector.
It is clear that codes of practice and guidance notes produced by the PCA and adopted by members, place us at the forefront of the adoption of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and the responsible and sustainable use of plant protection products. To that end we do not expect that members who concentrate on invasive weed control have much fear from the review of the NAP. The constant threat to the general availability of actives is an ever present consideration.
The safe and sustainable use of pesticides is a desirable outcome for everyone and the PCA will continue to engage in these consultations and represent the interests of members.
Environment Agency Publishes 5-Year Plan
Members, particularly our Invasive Weed members, will have seen that the Environment Agency published its 5-year plan, ‘EA2025 Creating a Better Place’. For those members who may have missed this, you can access the plan via the button below.
Disappointingly, it doesn’t mention invasives or biosecurity once, but does talk a lot about the importance of biodiversity (and includes specific performance targets for e.g. habitat creation, improved rivers, flood prevention). We hope this means they will be maintaining, possibly improving, their programme of invasive species monitoring and management, especially in waterways and sensitive sites. Also, that they will seek to work closely with your Association and others regarding flood prevention and resilience schemes.
Exams are back up & running!
We were delighted to be able to hold our first set of exams at PCA Head Office, following the return to training. Last week saw the CSSW exam prep take place, with CSTDB exams over two days this week and members can feel assured that all training and exams are running successfully, smoothly and most importantly, safely.
**Scotland training dates confirmed** We can also share with members that training in Scotland has also been confirmed as follows:
- Surveying Timber & Dampness in Buildings Training: 22-24 September
- CSTDB Exam Preparation: 13-14 October
- CSTDB Examination: 3-4th November
Our courses are filling up quickly, so be sure to get in touch with Amber or Jade on 01480 400000 to secure your place, or click on the button below.
A return to Monthly CPD Webinars
Just 1 week until our monthly webinars begin again! Join us from 9-10am on Thursday 23rd July as we look into ‘Verification of Ground Gas Protection Systems’.
Neil Salvidge will take us through the vital role that yours and others’ play in the planning, instigating and completion of a successful project. Understand the importance of compliance with planning conditions set against the project, and gain an understanding of this process in relation to the installation of ground gas protection systems.
Members can register for this webinar via the button below.
HSE ‘Spot Checks’
Members are reminded that HSE inspectors are carrying out ‘spot checks’ and they have outlined five practical steps to help members ensure they comply with health and safety law:
- Step 1 – carry out a COVID-19 risk assessment in line with HSE guidance
- Step 2 – develop increased cleaning, hand washing and hygiene procedures
- Step 3 – take all reasonable steps to help people work from home
- Step 4 – maintain 2 metre social distancing where possible
- Step 5 – where people cannot be 2 meter apart, manage transmission risk
These ‘spot checks’ have highlighted some common issues that PCA members will need to pay attention to, including:
- failing to provide arrangements for monitoring
- supervising and maintaining social distancing
- failing to introduce an adequate cleaning regime – particularly at busy times of the day
- providing access to welfare facilities to allow employees to frequently wash their hands with warm water and soap
Members can access more information and guidance by clicking on the button below.
Mental Health Remote Training Courses
Members may recall the recent webinar from Russell Mott, ATAS UK, “Building a Mentally Resilient Workforce”. With the growing issues identified by the Mind campaign and the post trauma effects of COVID-19 will be significant, Russell has planned official (MHFA England) Mental Health Aware and Mental Health First Aider courses that can be delivered remotely.
Members will benefit from the discounted rate for Trade Associations (TA) as follows:
Mental Health Aware: TA – £95pp / Non-TA – £125pp
Mental Health First Aider: TA – £125pp / Non-TA – £300pp
Members can find out more information on both courses, via the button below.
Other recent news or related info
- Tips for Surveying Cavity Walls
- Video Diagnostics During Lockdown
- COVID-19: Uncertain times for now
- Floods: Damaging to life, property – and the environment
- Code of Practice for Property Flood Resilience
- An Introduction to ‘Paula’s Papers’
- Launch of New Methodology for Traditional Buildings
- Hodgson View: Damp in Traditional Buildings
Remember to keep in the loop…
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