Minutes: 22nd of March 2018 – Loading Low Loaders

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There were 12 members and guests present. Bob Introduced Stephen Forde of Forde Training Services who was presenting on the topic of CPCS Loader Securer A50 category.

Stephen described how he would be covering the theory, testing and observing of the requisite skills related to loading and securing of construction plant for transportation. Whilst regrettable, it is Stephen’s experience that there is very poor application of adequate securing during transportation and it causes him some considerable concern to see inadequate securing down of plant when being driven on the public roads. This despite there being knowledgeable regulators for road transportation in the form of Traffic Police officers and Vehicle Operators and Standards Agency (VOSA) enforcement. The penalty for the transport driver having an unsecured or lost load will likely result in a fine and 6 points on their license.

The category loader securer does not include the driving on to a vehicle or trailer of the items of plant – there are a number of categories developed (A68*) for Plant driving – non-operational (for fitters etc.) and Loading /Unloading. The positioning of the item of plant on to the vehicle can be carried out by the transport driver or by the plant operator. In some respects it may be preferable for the plant operator to do so but the vehicle or trailer needs to be correctly positioned by the driver and suitable for the item being loaded.

There is a requirement to complete the VQ to gain the full CPCS Competent Operator Card (Blue) for Loader/Securer A50/A49.

To receive the initial Red CPCS Trained Operator Card candidates must pass both the CITB H&S Test (within the last 2 years) and the CPCS Theory Test and the Practical Test.

There are theory tests for A50 Loader Securer STGO [Special Types General Order – relates to vehicles with outsize loads etc.] and A49 Loader Securer (non STGO). A50 comprises 86 questions and A49 has 79**.

To carry out the training / assessment there are resources required which would include multiple items of plant, sufficient space and a vehicle on to which the items of plant can be loaded. The space required needs to be sufficient for the vehicle in use to safely manoeuvre and be parked and deploy ramps etc. as well as allowing space for the items of plant to be operated and driven onto the transport vehicle. There will need to be a trained operator for the items of plant – either full category or A68 Plant Driving and there may be requirement for a Plant and Vehicle Marshal dependent on the size of the item of plant and the visibility for the operator – many items of plant may not allow sight of vehicle access ramps nor position on trailer bed etc.

Chains and accessories etc. suitable for securing the items of plant to the transport vehicle are required. The candidate must demonstrate the ability to secure different types of plant to the transport vehicle – including positioning and securing hydraulic booms, rigid or articulated chassis plant (articulated must be witnessed to be locked for transportation), tracked and wheeled items as well as folding away of roll bars (ROPS) on dumpers. The number and type of securing chains / attachments needs to be compatible with the item of plant and the vehicle it is being secured to. Attachments points on items of plant are identified in the manufacturers’ information which must be available to the securer. The attachment points on the transport vehicle also need to be clearly understood. Any winches and remote controls need to be functional and certificated. A candidate cannot be assessed unless witnessed successfully and correctly securing different items of plant. Loading and securing of multiple items on one vehicle is also assessed and all items need to be properly loaded and secured for transportation on the road. For the A50 category the items to be witnessed include a tracked and wheeled items of plant over 10t and a roller over 10t.

The overall content includes:- Understanding their role and responsibilities as a loader/securer; types of transporter vehicles  controls and terminology; requirements of the operator’s handbook and other information; relevant regulations and legislation; understand legislative requirements for transporting loads on the highway / Road Traffic Act; route planning – access or height restrictions; pre-use checks including ascertaining height of load, overhangs and warnings etc.; preparing for public road use, loaded and unloaded; preparing for plant loading and unloading; deploy vehicle access ramps and edge protection (where fitted); understanding hazard controls; communication; load or direct the loading of different items of plant; secure and prepare for travel on the public highway; move the transporter loaded and unloaded; unload or direct the unloading of items of plant; check and stow securing equipment; stow access ramps; park the transporter.

Common hazards associated with loading and unloading and securing plant include the movements which can occur when ascending a vehicle ramp(s) and reaching the break point and the potential for tracked items to lurch. The potential for metal to metal allowing slips when loading metal tracked items or steel drummed rollers. The angle of incline of the access ramp in the context of the operational parameters of the item of plant – beaver tail type vehicles may have ramps steeper than a ride on twin drum roller can ascend. The means of getting from the operators position on the item of plant down to ground level. Interface with site operations or interface with the public when loading at the roadside.

*A68 Plant driving – non-operational driving categories

  • E: Tracked boom equipped – all sizes – non-operational only
  • F: Tracked boom equipped – all sizes – loading/ unloading
  • I: Tracked (blade/ shovel) – all sizes – non-operational only
  • J: Tracked (blade/ shovel) – all sizes – loading/ unloading
  • M: Wheeled articulated chassis – all sizes – non-operational only
  • N: Wheeled articulated chassis – all sizes – loading/ unloading
  • Q: Wheeled rigid chassis – all sizes – non-operational only
  • R: Wheeled rigid chassis – all sizes – loading/ unloading
  • S: Non-operational ride on roller
  • T: Loading/ unloading ride on roller

Loading / Unloading endorsement has the higher status, the test for these categories include 72 questions & Non-Operational 48 questions.

** https://www.citb.co.uk/documents/cards_and_testing/cpcs/support_materials/category_specific/cpcs_theory_test_question_a41_to_a78_inc_d90_to_d92.pdf

The group thanked Stephen for his presentation and information.

Bob highlighted Workers Memorial Day on 28th April and CECA’s Stop Make A Change campaign.  The next meeting will be on 19th April.

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