ESTA is the European association of abnormal road transport and mobile cranes ESTA is looking at adding rigger training to its ECOL crane operator training scheme

European crane and transport association ESTA is in talks about the possibility of developing a rigger training scheme. It would run alongside its increasingly popular European Crane Operator Licence (ECOL) operator training courses.

The move was revealed at the latest online ECOL Participants meeting. It followed discussions at the most recent meeting of the ECOL Supervisory Board. The Board gave the go-ahead for ECOL to investigate the issue in more detail.

Following the Board meeting, ECOL informally contacted a number of leading industry companies to test their reaction. The idea received a positive response from the oil and gas sector in particular, notably Shell and ExxonMobil, and ECOL experts are now drawing up more detailed plans.

ESTA director Ton Klijn said, “Currently, rigger qualifications are often different in different companies and countries and it may be that ECOL can help create a common standard that would improve safety and efficiency.

“That is what we are currently investigating and we will be talking to those authorities who currently run rigger training to see if we can develop a common and acceptable Europe-wide approach.”

ECOL’s crane operator training continues to develop and is steadily putting down roots across Europe. At the time of writing four training institutes had joined the ECOL system – EUC Lillebælt in Denmark; Sarens in Belgium; Mammoet in the Netherlands; and Liebherr in Germany – and ECOL had received applications from four more, two each from Belgium and Germany.

The organisation offers training in English, German, Danish and Dutch. Mutual recognition agreements are in place with TCVT in the Netherlands and BCACS in British Columbia, Canada, and talks are close to completion for similar deals in Germany and Denmark, ESTA said.

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