The Water Jetting Association has suspended all water jetting training to counter the health threat posed by the COVID-19 virus.
Its Ruling Council has based its decision on Government social distancing guidelines and planned legislation, designed to protect people against the virus.
The Water Jetting Association (WJA) is the largest provider of high pressure and ultra high pressure water jetting training in the UK.
More than 9,850 water jetting operatives attend its City & Guilds-accredited courses, delivered by WJA-registered training providers and WJA-approved training instructors, every year.
John Jones, WJA Vice President and Chairman of its Training and Safety Committee said: “We have not taken this decision lightly, but our priority must be the personal safety of all people involved in our training programme.”
The suspension period came into force on 18th March 2020. Measures have been put in place to support companies that have water jetting operatives who need mandatory WJA refresher training.
Water jetting operatives must retake the one-day Safety Awareness course every three years to retain their place on the WJA’s international register.
The WJA will now honour Safety Awareness courses for six months beyond the three-year deadline, from 18th March 2020, instead of one month as stated in the association’s standard operating procedures.
Given the current expert projections for the development of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, this should give companies and individuals time to book refresher courses when training resumes.
John Jones said: “We will keep the COVID-19 emergency under review and will reinstate water jetting training when it is right to do so, based on Government advice and regulatory controls.
“Our objective throughout will be to protect the interests of our members and those who rely on our water jetting training programme, while upholding the high standards we set for water jetting safety and quality.”
The association will process all training courses that have taken place before 18 March 2020. However, this may be to allow successful operatives to receive their WJA photo identity cards because WJA staff are working from home.
WJA training is recognised as setting the industry standard for water jetting across all business sectors, including petrochemicals, drainage and utilities, industrial cleaning, manufacturing, construction and demolition.
As well as the Safety Awareness course, the association provides a range of practical water jetting modules – Surface Preparation (SP), Tube and Pipe Cleaning (TP), Drain and Sewer Cleaning (DS), and Hydrodemolition (HD).