IPAF Static Vertical (1a)



IPAF Static Vertical (1a) MEWP Operator Training Course

Awarding Body:

International Powered Access Federation (IPAF)

Industry Specific:

Operation of Static Vertical (1a) Mobile Elevating Work Platforms (MEWPs)

Course Summary:

IPAF MEWP Operator training courses instruct an applicant to prepare for and safely operate various types of MEWPs. They generally last 1 – 3 days dependent on the applicant, machine category and size. They involve a combination of both theory and practical testing. Successful applicants will receive a Certificate, Powered Access Licence (PAL Card) and a User Log Book.

Course Aim:

To instruct an operator to prepare and safely operate various types of Static Vertical Platforms (1a). To obtain evidence of training and gain an industry recognised MEWP Operators’ Licence.


Training by an IPAF Instructor / 1 Category (Max 6 trainees), add a Category (Max 4 trainees).

Course Duration:

1 – 3 Days dependent on machine type(s)

Course Theory:

  • Introduction – Facilities, PAL card overview and Pre-course theory test.
  • MEWP Categories – Different types of MEWP and their descriptions and other courses available.
  • Structural Parts – Stabilising, levelling, chassis drive options, turntable, boom / scissor pack and MEWP selection.
  • Regulations – ISO 18878, European, HSWA, PUWER, LOLER, MHSW, WAHR and RIDDOR.
  • Pre-use Inspections / Handovers – Thorough examinations, familiarisation, pre-use inspection, identify safety items and controls, defects and emergency descent.
  • Safe Operating Methods and Hazards – Travelling to the workplace, positioning / terrain, SWL, weather, electrical hazards, harness statement, Do’s and Don’ts and parking.
  • Theory Test – Individual written test with explanation of pass requirements. Failure means applicants will have to resit the course another day.

Practical Training:

  • Introduction to the actual machine – Walk around and familiarisation with MEWP.
  • Major components – Identification of each component and its function.
  • Pre-use checks and inspection – Carry out all the required checks / inspections as directed by the machines operations manual.
  • Starting / stopping the machine – Correct starting and shut down procedures.
  • Pre-use functions checks – Fully function the machine and carry out full emergency lowering procedure.
  • Checks prior to road travel – Machine specific, but examples may include PTO disengaged, stabilisers retracted, auxiliary equipment secure, no loose objects etc.
  • Planning the route – Gradients, access, overhead obstructions and ground conditions.
  • Travelling the route and manoeuvring the machine (Where applicable) – Ensure route is clear, use of assistant to signal etc, practice close manoeuvring and observe correct driving practices.
  • Setting the machine for work – Practice setting up, barrier off requirements, road requirements, stabiliser set up and carry out stabiliser deployment checks.
  • Basic operational practice – Carry out operational functions at two thirds of full working envelope so far is reasonably practical, observe all safety practices.
  • Typical work applications – Carry out practice applications observing all safety practices.
  • Parking the machine – Ensure that the machine is correctly parked, engine stopped, brakes applied, keys removed and clearance of all obstacles. Correct refuelling procedures, Diesel, LPG, Battery checks, charging and safety precautions.
  • Practical Assessment – Individual verbal questions based on the use of the MEWP Operator Practical Test Plan.
  • Course Evaluation – Course evaluation and close.

Course Qualification:

On completion of the course, applicants are provided with documentation to prove that they are certified, as well as an IPAF PAL Card to carry with them on site. It remains valid for five years.

Joining Instructions:

Due to regular IPAF training programme updates, course criteria and content may be subject to change. All IPAF training centres will advise and provide the relevant information and specific joining instructions prior to applicants undertaking a course. To find an IPAF Approved Training Centre that currently offers this course you can search by region in our IPAF Training Directory.

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