PASMA allocates £150,000 to assist members and expand training



It is now almost twelve months since PASMA, the trade association representing the mobile access tower industry in the UK and Ireland, published its much anticipated review into the comparative technical, operational and safety aspects of Through the Trap (3T) and Advance Guardrail (AGR) methods for assembling and dismantling mobile access towers. It concluded that both systems provide an acceptable safe method of work.

Extraordinary General Meeting of Members

    In that time the Association has acted promptly and decisively to implement the recommendations of the 20-page review, culminating in the decision this week at an Extraordinary General Meeting of Members to allocate £150,000 to assist approved training centres with the purchase of additional equipment.

    In the wake of the review this will be used to meet the new requirement for enhanced AGR training to be delivered as an integral part of PASMA’s industry standard Towers for Users course. Following the review it is now mandatory for all PASMA approved training centres to provide practical, as well as theoretical, training in the use of both Advance Guardrail (AGR) and Through the Trap (3T) methods of assembling, altering and dismantling towers.

    The decision to empower Council to make grants to members for the purchase of Advance Guardrail towers is the latest in a series of measures introduced by the Association following the publication of the review, which was carried out in collaboration with the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) and carries a foreword by the regulator. 

CPD Seminars  

    From the outset, PASMA was determined to explain the implications and make clear that when used in accordance with the manufacturers’ instructions and guidance, both systems offered an acceptable safe method of work, with AGR systems providing comprehensive fall protection, and the 3T system using conventional components to minimise the risk of a fall.

    It therefore arranged a nationwide series of CPD seminars – compulsory for all PASMA instructors – to ensure that its instructors fully understood both the content and consequences of the review. These seminars provided knowledge and information about the latest developments in Advance Guardrail towers, with the focus on the latest generation of integral AGR products.    

Towers for Users Course

    Next, the Association introduced into its industry standard Towers for Users course, a mandatory section, both theoretical and practical, devoted to AGR towers. Importantly, attendees are now marked on their understanding of Advance Guardrail  towers in exactly the same way as 3T towers. Equal weight and content is given to both, and successful attendees leave with the skills and instruction necessary – and a certificate and photo card – to use the two methods safely and competently on site.

AGRs for Towers for Users

    Finally, the Association has recently launched a new training module – available nationally through its approved training centres – intended to supplement, but not replace, the Towers for Users course. This stand alone module focuses entirely on safety and best practice when using Advance Guardrail mobile access towers. It is specifically geared towards tower owners and users wishing to acquire a more in-depth understanding of AGR systems and techniques.

    Comments PASMA’s managing director, Peter Bennett: “All these initiatives have been universally welcomed as positive steps towards raising the standard and scope of PASMA training.

“Having said that, it has meant that PASMA training centres have been compelled to invest in additional equipment in order to comply with the new directives. Following the EGM, Council is now empowered to make grants to PASMA training centres to help mitigate the cost of upgrading tower equipment used for training. “ 

    “In the current economic climate Council felt it was right and proper to assist members in this proactive, practical way. Trading conditions are demanding and this is a tangible way in which the Association can help and support its members to ensure that both systems are properly and equally represented in all aspects of the Association’s work.”

Via: Press Release