Industry Refresher Training


Industry Refresher Training


What is expected of me as an chainsaw operator or employer?

Contract awards with FISA participating organisations will require chainsaw operators and those supervising the contract to demonstrate that they have undertaken formally recorded chainsaw training within the five-year period immediately prior to the commencement of any operation/contract.

What is the Compliance date?

The deadline for compliance was agreed as 1st October 2013. Everyone now needs to demonstrate their refresher training record to the Landowner, Forest Works Manager or Site Supervisor or the relevant responsible agent.

Is the Scheme just for Chainsaw Operators?

No, FISA recognises the essential role that those supervising chainsaw operations have to play in maintaining / enhancing operator safety. The Scheme therefore also applies to supervisors and a specific module has been designed to address this.

Is the Scheme just for FISA members who are Operators/Contractors?

No, the scheme applies to all contractors/operators who undertake chainsaw work on behalf of a FISA Member.

Do I need to be a FISA member to be eligible for the Training?

No, the FISA Scheme is about setting a standard within the forest industry and therefore FISA training is available to non –members. One benefit of FISA membership is of course that the cost of any FISA organised training will be at a reduced price compared to that for non-members.

Does the scheme just apply to Harvesting Operations?

No, the scheme applies to all forest operations / operatives which involve the use of a chainsaw e.g. fencing, cleaning etc

How do I apply?

There are three ways in which an operator / supervisor can comply with the new industry best practice:

1. Demonstrate previous suitable training:

If you are able to demonstrate or evidence that you have had suitable training for chainsaw operation, delivered by an approved Lantra or City and Guilds instructor between 1st October 2008 (and 1st October 2013) then you may be considered to have achieved the minimum requirement of Refresher training.

What is considered suitable training?

You must be able to evidence attendance and completion of a chainsaw operator course which must have included the basic elements of AFAG/FISA guides 301, 302, 303.

You must be able to produce an attendance record and illustrate the acceptable course content.

Typically operator courses run by Lantra or City and Guilds instructors are very likely to have covered these elements.

What about previously run Refresher Courses?

Over a number of years, some Companies operating in the sector have commissioned their own Refresher training courses. It is probable that these courses will have covered the basic elements and satisfies the new requirements. If you attended any such course, you should contact the Company or your employer to assist in providing evidence of the course content and your attendance. If the appropriate information is available then you will be deemed to have met the refresher standard and not be expected to retrain for a further 5 year period.

2.0 Attending a FISA registered Update/Refresher Training course

By attending and successfully completing one of the following courses, delivered by a FISA recognised trainer, a chainsaw operator / supervisor can satisfy the full requirements of the new industry best practice.

Forest Harvesting Operations


Course Ref No:


Refresher/Update Felling Course


Forest Management Operations




Refresher/Update Basic Course


Forest Operation Supervisors




Refresher/ Update supervisors Course


3.0  Attendance of other relevant Industry courses  e.g. Achieving a higher competency unit.

Operators and employers may also provide evidence of other qualifications/courses offered by one of the industry training organisations provided the course includes relevant elements for refresher purposes, (i.e. tree felling training).

For clarity, FISA continues to recognise the validity of the existing and past industry qualifications e.g. old NPTC and new City and Guilds and Lantra awards qualifications.

After 1st October 2013 any operator successfully progressing through to a higher level unit (and delivered by a non-FISA trainer) this will also qualify for having met the refresher criteria under the FISA evidenced route.

This compliance will have a renewal refresher period of 5 years.

If there is any concern or questions regarding suitability of your training it can be referred to FISA for further consideration. Tel No: 07747 038200

A full list of FISA trainers is available on the website.