Do You Have a Technically Competent Manager at Your Waste/Recycling Site?

If you have an environmental permit for a waste management activity, you are required to comply with a government-approved technical competency scheme. This could be a technically competent manager (TCM) trained under the WAMITAB/CIWM Operator Competency Scheme.

A person is considered technically competent if they can present the relevant knowledge and skills to ensure that waste sites remain compliant. They should have a strong understanding of relevant environmental regulations, safety standards, waste management processes, equipment maintenance and related technical processes in the industry.

Understanding the Importance

The environmental regulator is now able to track whether sites comply with a competency scheme through the data submitted within the site operator's waste returns. Failure to comply with TCM requirements can lead to regulators taking enforcement action against the site operator.

Generally, the attendance requirement for a TCM is a minimum of 20 percent of operating hours according to the relevant guidance. However, this can vary depending on permit type, site location, operator compliance rating and environmental regulator agreements.

Records must be kept of the sites operating hours, and when the technically competent manager arrives and leaves the site. It is advised that the TCM should pay close attention any high-risk and critical hours in order to minimise risks associated with operations.

What If?

Unexpected absences due to illness and emergencies are rare, but they do occur. If you find that the TCM is unable to be onsite for unforeseen circumstances, then an interim TCM should be found to step-in for the duration of absence.

Certora Training provides flexible technical competence cover for sites that experience unplanned absences or see a change in staff positions. The service involves sending a technically competent person to cover your site as a technically competent manager so you can continue to meet the legislative requirements for your operations.

Route to Achieve Technical Competence

The WAMITAB/CIWM Operator Competency Scheme is an ideal way to achieve your technical competence. Achieving this qualification means that learners are able to manage permitted waste facilities in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

To gain your primary competence, learners should successfully complete either an on-site assessment, or the CIWM/WAMITAB Level 4 VRQ Waste and Resource Management.

The onsite assessment can be completed by all risk facilities. Learners who have a sufficient amount of experience and underlying knowledge of the industry would benefit from this method. A working site needs to be accessible to be able to complete this method of learning as specific resources are required which can only be utilised within a working environment.

Those who are new to the industry would benefit from taking the VRQ as it involves an academic approach which provides an in-depth overview on legislation, environmental permitting and most treatment processes within the sector. It’s important to note that learners from high-risk facilities are not able to take this route due to complexity of operations. The VRQ course can be completed online as virtual learning course, or we can deliver the course in-person, tailored to your specific requirements.

Once you successfully complete the on-site assessment or VRQ, if you wish to continue to act as a recognised technically competent manager, you are required to take a Continuing Competence assessment to demonstrate that you have kept your knowledge and skills up to date. The assessment would be completed at a Pearson Vue Centre.

For more information, contact our team today.

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