IPAF Training FAQ's

What Kind Of Training Does Horizon Platforms Provide?

We offer a host of IPAF courses seven days a week throughout the UK. Here at Horizon Platforms we deliver accredited IPAF and PASMA training courses for access platforms and MEWPs. Whether you are a beginner trying to gain your first qualification or an experienced operator looking for a management course, our instructors can guide you through the whole process. You can find out about our available courses here

Are you looking for more information on IPAF and PASMA training courses? Read our complete guide on access platform training for everything you need to know.

Do I Need To Open An Account To Book A Training Course?

You don’t need to open an account with Horizon Platforms to book a training course. You can book training online or by phone, and payment can be taken via credit or debit card.

Do you Need Training to Use or Operate a Cherry Picker, Scissor Lift or Boom Lift?

Yes, you need to show evidence of adequate training in order to operate MEWPs. As outlined in the Work at Height 2005 Regulations (WAHR), being competent is a legal requirement for any person involved in working with powered access in the UK. This includes operators as well as managers and supervisors.

Depending on your circumstances, there may be a variety of MEWP training options available. For example, your employer may provide their own scissor lift or cherry picker training as part of your role. However, there are two main training bodies in the UK that deliver internationally-recognised MEWP courses that meet WAHR requirements: IPAF and PASMA. Find out more about these organisations below.

What is IPAF, What Does it Mean and is it a Legal Requirement?

IPAF is an acronym that stands for The International Powered Access Federation. This international body is most commonly known for its access platform training and although their courses are not a legal requirement in the UK, IPAF training is recognised as best practice around the world. 

Founded in 1983, IPAF has played a key role in the creation of safety legislation and has been working to standardise MEWP controls since 2009. Today there are IPAF members in more than 65 countries and hundreds of accredited training centres worldwide. This includes Horizon Platforms' state-of-the-art training facility in Normanton, where we offer a range of IPAF-accredited courses including training for operators, supervisors and managers.

You can find out more about IPAF training on our blog: What Is IPAF Training & Why Is It Important?

Additionally, IPAF provides a range of free resources including talks, checklists and in-depth guidance. You can view our top picks in our Top IPAF Training Resources blog.

What is PASMA and What Does it Mean?

PASMA is an acronym that stands for the Prefabricated Access Suppliers’ and Manufacturers’ Association. Established in 1974, PASMA works alongside regulators and professional bodies such as the HSE to promote the use, development and maintenance of mobile access towers with the aim of advancing work-at-height safety across the globe.

With a focus on training, PASMA design courses that create competent personnel. These courses are delivered by approved PASMA training members, including the experts at our Horizon Platforms training facilities. Their training is recognised on a global scale, with members that span from the UK to the Middle East and Asia.

What is the Difference Between IPAF and PASMA?

IPAF and PASMA are not-for-profit organisations working to enhance the safety of working at height. These bodies have been — and continue to be — instrumental in the creation of health and safety legislation, working in unison with other leading organisations and creating industry-leading training programmes that comply with WAHR.

The key difference between IPAF and PASMA is their areas of focus. IPAF works to promote the safe use of powered access (such as cherry pickers and scissor lifts), while PASMA works to promote the safe use of mobile access towers (or scaffolding).

What is a PAL Card or IPAF Licence?

A PAL card or Powered Access Licence is provided to individuals who successfully complete an IPAF course at an accredited training centre. These cards are internationally recognised and demonstrate that an operator has been trained to a competent level, as required by the Work at Height Regulations 2005 (WAHR).

How Can I Renew My IPAF or PASMA Licence?

PAL cards and PASMA licences are valid for five years from the date of issue, with each card displaying an expiry date. This is the date by which an individual must retrain in order to renew their licence and continue working with powered access platforms or mobile access towers.

To renew your IPAF PAL card or PASMA licence, you must take a training course at an accredited training centre. For PAL cards, providing this is completed prior to the expiry date and your log books have been filled in correctly, you can take a shorter renewal course. However, if your card or licence has already expired, you will need to retake the full course.

How Long Does an IPAF or PASMA Training Course Take?

How long IPAF or PASMA training takes depends on the course you choose. However, here at Horizon Platforms, most of the accredited courses we deliver take one day. This includes a theoretical component that can be completed online and a practical section that is completed under the supervision of a qualified instructor. 

For example, the operator course is one of our most popular options and can be completed in one full day, while some courses — such as our instructor training — have additional requirements and take longer to complete. You can find more information in our IPAF Training FAQs.

How do I Book a Training Course with Horizon and What Courses do You Offer?

From operator and harness use to demonstrator and instructor courses, you can book MEWP training directly through our website. This includes our combined 3a/3b operator course that covers self-propelled boom and vertical platforms, as well as our popular management course designed to ensure individuals are competent when supervising work involving MEWPs.

To find out more, take a look at our individual course pages:

  • Operator Certificate
  • PAL Plus
  • Safety Harness Use & Inspection
  • Loading and Unloading Training
  • Pre-Delivery Inspection
  • Demonstrator Course
  • Instructor Course
  • MEWPs for Managers Course

As an IPAF-accredited training provider, you can book Horizon Platforms’ training courses with confidence. All of our instructors are highly qualified and experienced, so you can leave our facility with the skills required to work competently at height. All you need to do is choose a date that suits you and we will arrange the rest.

Where is Your Depot/Training Facility Located?

Our training facility is located at our Horizon Platforms Super Depot in Normanton, Wakefield, where we are open from 08:30 to 17:30, Monday to Friday. You will find us on Rosie Road off the A659, just over one mile from junction 31 on the M62.

Our training centre is audited on an annual basis and has been accredited by IPAF and PASMA. In fact, we are proud to have a wide range of accreditations and certifications at Horizon Platforms. This includes IPAF Rental+ Gold, a mark of quality that ensures the competency of our trainers and demonstrators, as well as our excellent levels of service, maintenance and customer care.

Can You Deliver MEWP Training at My Site?

Depending on your needs, you can choose between attending courses at our facility or arranging for training to be delivered at your own premises. Our demonstrators can deliver all of our IPAF courses at a location that suits you, training your workforce at a time and place that fits with your business schedule.

If you need custom training, we are able to deliver bespoke courses, provide materials in additional languages and support any additional requirements. To enquire about course delivery at your own premises or discuss your bespoke training needs, email our team: [email protected]