IPAF 3A & 3B Operator Training Course

What qualifications are needed for taking the course?

  • Candidates must be 16 years of age or older, the Law specify that it’s the minimum required age.
  • A person must be medically fit to operate the machines.
  • Trainees must be equipped with the following: Helmet, Safety Boots, Hi-Visibility Vest, Harness & Adjustable Restraint Lanyard.  The Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) should be with the person upon arrival and be worn while in training.
Trainees are required to have a level of literacy that enables them to fully understand safety notices and manufacturer’s instruction manuals.  Trainees must be physically fit and in good health.  Eyesight or hearing problems would impair the trainee from completing the course and possibly would not be able to operate the machines safely, during the course each trainee will be required to operate the MEWPs.  No formal qualifications are required.

Course Objectives

We aim to teach future operators how to prepare their machines safely and operate various types of Mobile Elevating Work Platforms (MEWPs). It includes all types of scissor lifts and personnel lifts that do not have outriggers to be driven safely within the manufacturer’s specification.
The machine categories included are:
  • Mobile Scissor Lifts (3a): include Scissor lifts, mobile vertical personnel platforms
  • Mobile Boom Lifts (3b): Include self-propelled booms and articulated booms (also known as cherry pickers)
Once completed the course, the trainee will be issued with a powered access license smart card also known as an IPAF PAL (Powered Access License) card.
The IPAF license (International Powered Access Federation) PAL card is internationally accepted as proof of MEWP operator training throughout the world.  The IPAF 3a and 3b categories training courses are designed to instruct an operator to be able to prepare and operate various types of Mobile Elevating Work Platforms (MEWPs) which include cherry pickers, scissor lifts, and mobile booms such as articulated & electric boom lifts. 


1 full day

Course Programme & Assessment

The IPAF Operator Training Course is divided into four parts:
  • Classroom tutorials
  • Theory assessment
  • Practical training
  • Practical assessment
This includes Health & Safety regulations and legislation.  Accidental control and prevention.  Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and Working at Heights Regulations.
Once the theoretical studies are completed the trainee will be required to complete the practical side of his training which includes prechecks of the machine to ensure safe operation and will learn to apply his personal safety gear and the correct way of using the harness. Practical use of the Auxiliary and manual descent procedure.
The trainee will too be required to demonstrate his ability to operate the MEWP safely and practice manoeuvers as required by the course instructor.  


On compilation of the course, each trainee will receive the 3A and 3B IPAF qualifications, and an IPAF Certificate of Training for these. These will both be accessible via the IPAF ePAL app, which is available on Android and iOS smartphones, and also includes a logbook and safety information.