From education to employment

NOCN adapts workplace cut-off saw safety scheme into valuable new qualification

NOCN, one of the UK’s largest construction sector awarding and assessment organisations, has launched a major new safety qualification on the correct handling and operation of cut-off saws that is based on a proven highly effective workplace safety scheme.

Its dynamic SiteRight Cut-Off Saw Training certificate was originally developed by Skanska, Stihl and NOCN working partner, the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB). The course was designed to address the level of consistent training and operator competency with cut-off saws onsite. 

NOCN’s half day course content includes a rundown of the operator responsibilities; correct PPR wear and the dangers of non-compliance; abrasive wheel fitting; safe working areas and fuelling; and proper starting and operation of the machines, including cutting methods and use of accessories.

The comprehensive package also covers the health risks of silica dust, vibration, noise and petrol driven saw use in poorly ventilated areas. Further vital course content shows how to ensure that the right wheel is used for the particular model and application; correct machine fuelling; and how to secure the workplace, stand while working and avoid kickbacks. 

In addition, Students will learn the right techniques for different materials and how to transport saws and cutting blades safely, without causing damage.  Throughout the course, students complete written and practical assessments.

The SiteRight certificate, which is simple-to-deliver for training providers and FE Colleges, gives employers enhanced onsite safety and valid H&S certification for five years from the UK’s leading construction awarding organisation. It enhances companies’ reputations as responsible organisations that invest in the continuous development and safety of their staff.

NOCN, Deputy Head of Construction, Chris Carter-Rowlands, said:

“We are taking firm steps to improve the safety and wellbeing of construction workers through education and learning. The use of cut-off saws requires careful planning and responsible handling – and all operators need to be appropriately trained.

“We are very grateful to Stihl and our long-time ally, CITB, for allowing us to deliver their original concept to training providers, FE Colleges and construction employing organisations nationwide. The move is in line with our ongoing mission to bring an enhanced range of relevant, useful, approved training that meets the needs of employers, colleges, training providers and learners. 

“CITB helped us take a big step forward in achieving this in 2017, when it transferred CSkills Awards to us, thereby creating the UK’s second largest construction awarding organisation. Last year, we consolidated our position as a top industry player by acquiring its Construction Plant Competence Scheme.”

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