Which Street Works course do I need?

The work you will be doing on the road will determine which NRSWA qualification you require, and therefore which course.

The works can be anything and everything, ranging from doing a drop kerb - to trimming the hedge on the side of the road – to a career change into traffic management.

First things first – the Street Works basics

The first and most important thing you need to know is that the New Roads and Street Works Act 1991 (NRSWA), requires that any work done on a road or pathway (non-motorway) there needs to be at least one qualified Operative and one qualified Supervisor.
These need to be two separate people.
Any work covers everything done on the roads or pathway, from putting up the street Christmas lights to filling in the potholes.

The Street Works Units

As we have learnt Street Works is separated into 2 roles; an Operative, who does the manual work and a Supervisor, who supervises or manages the work.
Below is a full list of the units – they are self-explanatory as to what they cover – so be sure to pick a course with all the units that cover the work you are doing.
Please note we have included the 'previously known as' unit numbers in brackets.

Units of Competence for Trained Operatives 

  • Unit LA (001) Location and avoidance of underground apparatus (Cat and Genny)
  • Unit O1 (002) Signing, lighting and guarding 
  • Unit O2 (003) Excavation in the road/highway 
  • Unit O3 (004) Reinstatement and compaction of backfill materials 
  • Unit O4 (005) Reinstatement of sub-base and road-base on non-bituminous materials 
  • Unit O5 (006) Reinstatement of cold-lay bituminous materials 
  • Unit O6 (007) Reinstatement of hot-lay bituminous materials
  • Unit O7 (008) Reinstatement of concrete slabs
  • Unit O8 (009) Reinstatement of modular surfaces and concrete footways

Units of Competence for Trained Supervisors 

  • Unit LA (001) Location and avoidance of underground apparatus 
  • Unit S1 (010) Monitoring signing, lighting and guarding 
  • Unit S2 (011) Monitoring excavation in the road/highway 
  • Unit S3 (012) Monitoring reinstatement and compaction of backfill materials 
  • Unit S4 (013) Monitoring reinstatement of sub-base and road-base in non-bituminous materials 
  • Unit S5 (014) Monitoring reinstatement of bituminous materials 
  • Unit S6 (015) Monitoring reinstatement of concrete slabs
  • Unit S7 (016) Monitoring reinstatement of modular surfaces and concrete footways

How the NRSWA units apply to real life?

If you are digging up the road and laying down new tarmac you will require all of the above units for the Operative, and the manager will require the Supervisor equivalent.
This means for those drop kerbs, which involve excavation and reinstatement, you will need a full course which covers all the units.
For those who are trimming the hedges on the side of the road – you have no digging or reinstatement required as part of your job, so you will not need all the units. 
But you will need to be able to direct people or traffic around where you are working safely.
This role will require the Signing, lighting and guarding unit – which covers the temporary signs, cones and potentially lights that you may need to do this. And as always there must be at least one Operative (O1) and on Supervisor (S1).

What NRSWA courses are available?

As a general rule for the majority of centres these are the training course options:
  • 5 Day Operative course (Units LA, O1-O5 or O6 and O8)
  • 5 Day Supervisor course (Units LA, S1-S5 and S7)
  • 1 Day Single Unit Course (One unit from the following: Units LA, Unit O1 or Unit S1)

Note: If you need a variation outside of the above, for example LA, O1-O3, or if you need additional units adding to your current qualifications, for example unit O6, then you can call us or your current training provider for your options.

If you are still not sure?

Do not panic that is what we are here for, if you are still confused as to what street works units you need for your job please reach out to us on 0333 301 0226 or if you prefer you can email us at [email protected]