In order to obtain a certificate of competency, the applicant must complete the charger's training and the associated interview and have accumulated a sufficient amount of work experience. The length of the training and work experience depend on the certificate of competency that the person is applying for.
The training of a pyrotechnician focuses on pyrotechnics, which differ fundamentally from other blasting work.
The key safety risk for pyrotechnicians is that they carry out their work in the immediate vicinity of an audience. This is the reason for the different requirements in their training. The training aims to provide pyrotechnicians with the necessary skills for safely conducting their pyrotechnical work with explosives and other related substances while taking the close proximity of their audience into account.
The minimum length of a pyrotechnician’s basic course is 40 lessons.
The junior charger’s certificate applies to specific types of work:
- clearance blasting
- ice jam blasting
- blasting in laboratory experiments
- seismic blasting
- rock blasting
- explosion welding
- structural blasting
- blasting of hardened and hot materials.
The curriculum is similar for all work types, but the course’s professional work periods differ from one another.
The minimum length of a junior charger’s basic course is 40 lessons.
If a charger wishes to add another work type to their certificate, which initially includes only one type of work, they must carry out
the professional work period and interview related to that specific work type.
The purpose of the senior charger training is to provide the person with the skills to act independently in blasting work. A senior charger is allowed to use significantly more explosive materials outside populated areas than a junior charger. A senior charger’s certificate entitles its holder to act as the head of blasting work in mines, meaning that the training also provides the skills necessary for this task.
The course’s vocational studies focus on above-ground and/or underground excavation work.
The length of a senior charger’s basic course is 224 lessons. If a person has prior recognisable work or other experience, the course may be shortened, but its minimum length is always 164 lessons. The number of lessons is determined on a per-person basis at the beginning of the training.
Chief chargers work in tasks that are more demanding than those assigned to senior chargers. Chief chargers are not subject to any quantitative restrictions on the use of explosives.
The chief charger’s training provides students with more in-depth information on modern excavation technologies that focus on different bedrock characteristics and the explosives and methods used in them.
The length of a chief charger’s basic course is 90 lessons. If the person has prior experience, this can be recognised in the training. However, even in this case, the training will include at least 80 lessons.
Blasting coordinators serve as blasting supervisors in populated areas where there are people present who are not part of the work site.
The blasting coordinator’s training places special emphasis on the planning and management of blasting and excavation work.
The length of a blasting coordinator’s basic course is 40 lessons.
The refresher course required for renewing a charger’s certificate consists of eight lessons. The refresher course is the same for all certificate holders. The refresher course focuses on any relevant legislative reforms that have been introduced.
Applicants must complete the refresher course before their certificate expires. If a course is cancelled for reasons beyond an applicant’s control, they can apply for an extension to their certificate for a justified reason from the permit authority.
Appealing the results of an interview
After successfully completing a charger’s course, the certificate applicant must participate in an interview with an expert appointed by the permit authority. If the applicant is rejected on the basis of their interview, they may appeal the decision. The appeal must be submitted to the Division of Occupational Safety and Health of the Regional State Administrative Agency for Western and Inland Finland. The expert must provide the person who participated in the interview with the necessary instructions for appeal in case their application is rejected.