RTITB warns lack of GSE driver training is jeopardising safety

Written by: Felicity Stredder |
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The UK and Ireland’s workplace transport training accrediting body has warned that ground handling companies may be compromising safety by failing to provide operator training for the different types of ramp equipment.

In addition to the pressures of time, inclement weather and the ‘human factor’, a lack of understanding regarding training requirements and their limitations may be increasing the level of risk for airside operations, relates Laura Nelson, Managing Director of RTITB.

“To truly reduce risk, it is vitally important for employers of ground handlers to understand what is, and isn’t, covered by the Airside Driver Permit (ADP) training and deliver the necessary training to their staff,” explains Nelson. “The ADP requires the operator to have a Category B driving license, so many employers wrongly assume that as long as an operator has done ADP training, they will be able to drive any type of airside equipment skilfully and safely. That is simply not the case,” she remarks.

Operators are issued with permits that allow them to drive on certain areas of the airfield, dependent on the ADP training completed. For example, ‘A’ permits are for airside roads and the apron and ‘M’ permits are for manoeuvring areas. ‘R’ permits are for the runway and can only be obtained once an ‘M’ permit has been acquired, the RTITB explains.

At no level does ADP training focus on driving itself, however; therefore, obtaining an ADP does not automatically qualify operators to use all types of airside equipment. In fact, CAP790 states that training is required in accordance with DVLA or industry standards for all the equipment that operators will use, including training on safely operating baggage tugs, de-icers, re-fuellers, waste removal lorries, beltloaders, hi-loaders, tractors and airbridges, to name a few.
CAP790 also offers guidance on managing driver behaviour and the revocation of permits where serious or ongoing offences occur.

“CAP790 aims to help all parties in and around the airfield achieve a less reactive and more proactive approach to the supervision and management of drivers,” says Laura. “However, to achieve optimal airside safety, employers need to understand the important difference between complying with ADP requirements and delivering equipment operator training.”

RTITB runs training courses designed to help companies comply with local laws and international requirements of EASA, as well as to improve the standards of GSE operator training. The organisation’s training standards are used extensively in the UK, Ireland, India and the Middle East, across various industry sectors, including supply chain, freight forwarding, cold chain, and airports.


This material is protected by The Airports Publishing Network Ltd copyright see Terms and Conditions.
One-off usage is permitted but bulk copying is not. For multiple copies contact alwyn@groundhandling.com

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