The new RP402 (asbestos surveying refresher course) was made available on 31st October, with RP404 (asbestos site clearance analysis) and RP405 (asbestos management) to follow in November 2018. Santia Training Consultants Ellie Clarke and Nik Porter both worked with BOHS to revise and update the RP402 syllabus and are currently working on the RP404 and RP405 to bring the syllabi more in line with their styles of delivery and to maximise the experience for the learners.
The refresher courses, which were initially launched in October 2016, have been revised in response to feedback from training providers and candidates. The examination element has been removed from these courses as there was concern among candidates about failing the exam and what this would mean for their employability, as the BOHS proficiency modules are mandatory for Surveyors and Analysts working for UKAS accredited consultancies. Instead, tutors will conduct an informal assessment to test the candidate’s learning and to establish any additional teaching required.
Additionally, the format of the syllabus has now been changed to include a list of compulsory and optional topics that the tutor can choose to teach to suit the needs of their individual candidates. Compulsory topics will include items such as legislative changes in the last 12 months and material/priority assessments.
BOHS refresher courses are one-day training sessions that are delivered by BOHS’ Approved Training Providers, such as Santia. The courses are supported by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS), and comply with the requirements outlined in the Control of Asbestos Regulations (CAR) 2012 for asbestos practitioners to undertake annual refresher training for licensed and non-licensed work.
Many of those working in the asbestos industry may have undertaken their original training ten or even fifteen years ago. Since then, there have been several revisions of the asbestos regulations (CAWR 2002, CAR 2006, CAR 2012), the introduction of ACOP L143, the replacement of MDHS 100 with HSG 264 and the replacement of MDHS 39/4 with HSG 248. BOHS Refresher training ensures that delegate’s knowledge is up to date and formalised in a certificated course rather than internal updates, non-certificated courses and toolbox talks.
The HSE has recently announced that it will target construction firms across Great Britain to review measures taken by businesses to protect their workers’ health. Its campaigns such as Go Home Healthy and Dustbuster raise awareness of the importance of looking after personnel. One way to ensure workers are protected is to ensure they have refreshed their training. It is recommended by the HSE that licensed and non-licensed asbestos workers refresh their training regularly, in the event of changes to legislation and procedures. Workplaces could be investigated by the HSE if there is a lack of evidence to show that staff have completed refresher training.
Without being aware of the latest legislation and procedures, workers could be exposing themselves to respiratory cancers including lung cancer and mesothelioma. These are long-latency diseases where symptoms manifest many years after initial exposure to substances. According to the HSE, asbestos still kills around 5000 workers each year and around 20 tradesmen die each week as a result of past exposure.
John Lyons, BOHS Technical Advisor states, “The new-style asbestos refreshers will provide a much-needed update and technical support to many working in the asbestos industry. This bespoke approach with no formal examination should make these courses a very popular way to update knowledge of all those working within the asbestos industry”.
Benefits of the courses
The course benefits include:
- Every attendee will receive a BOHS-branded certificate to confirm their attendance – BOHS is the “quality stamp” for asbestos training courses and an effective method of proving competency to both customers and auditors
- Training takes no longer than a day and approximately half a day for more experienced professionals
- Learning is adapted to suit specific training needs, covering areas which delegates find the most challenging and helping to improve skills in the workplace
- Some companies may only offer asbestos awareness refresher training. However, BOHS refresher courses delve into details on the practitioner’s role to help them refresh on their day-to-day tasks, as well as refreshing on the theoretical learning of asbestos.
Santia currently offer the new RP402 and original RP405 alongside the P401, P402, P403, P404, P405, P407 and UKATA courses, including the new Asbestos in Soils and Duty to Manage courses. To find out more about these courses or to make a booking, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 03300 241 444 to speak to a course advisor.
Consultancy Director John Evans and Asbestos Training Consultant Ellie Clarke receiving a Customer Service Excellence Award in July 2018 from UKATA.
John Evans and Ellie Clarke