IPAF prepares for shake-up in Italian training

By Murray Pollok18 October 2012

Gerhard Hillebrand, IPAF's Italy country manager, shows the organisation's brochure on the new train

Gerhard Hillebrand, IPAF's Italy country manager, shows the organisation's brochure on the new training regulations.

IPAF’s Italian office is preparing for a shake-up in its operator training scheme to adapt to new regulations that will come into force in Italy on 13 March next year.

IPAF’s Italy country manager Gerhard Hillebrand, speaking to AI at the SAIE exhibition, said the regulations require anyone operating potentially dangerous equipment to have certified training, and prescribe minimum standards of training and training facilities.

The aerial platform rules require a full day’s theoretical training followed by practical tuition on a separate day, with practical training carried out by a working operator and not a full-time trainer. This will mean an end to one-day training in Italy.

The new legislation requires four hours of theory training and IPAF said it was unclear whether it would be possible for operators to complete training and testing in one day. IPAF is seeking clarification on the proposes use "of some innovative training methods to meet the requirements of the regulations within one day."

The regulations impact on a wide range of machines, including cranes and telehandlers.

Training centres have to meet minimum standards including ISO9001 quality certification and facilities adapted for disabled trainees. Mr Hillebrand said many existing training centres may have to invest up to €30000 to meet the requirements.

As well as potentially creating a rush for operator training, those operators who have previously been trained, but at a lower level than the new requirements, may have to be retrained.

IPAF said existing Italian PAL Cards will remain valid in Italy after 13 March, but said holders of non-Italian PAL Cards may have to do additional training to meet the requirements of the legislation. IPAF is seeking clarification and solutions for this.

“The demand for training will be incredibly high”, said Mr Hillebrand, “and once the law is fully enforced – on 13 March – the fines if you don’t have a licence will be very high, including imprisonment.”

IPAF plans to become a certified training centre in northern Italy before the end of the year, complying in the rest of Italy before the March 2013 deadline.

At SAIE, the organisation was providing one-hour ‘mini-training’ sessions to visitors as a way of demonstrating the quality of its certification programme.

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