National Sprayer Testing Scheme Equipment Check

Is your pesticide spraying equipment compliant?

All vehicle mounted application equipment used to apply professional pesticides must hold a valid test certificate – rather like an MOT for sprayers, issued under the National Sprayer Testing Scheme (NSTS).

Legislation is in place for all sectors where they might be in use, such as; agriculture, horticulture & the amenity sector.

The description ‘Amenity’ covers many areas, including: golf courses, playing fields, sports pitches, railways, footpaths & highways. Sprayers working in public areas are especially visible to public scrutiny and should be tested to ensure they do not pose a health or contamination risk to operators, people or the wider environment as championed by the Amenity Forum. The Amenity Forum is the lead body for the amenity sector to encourage best practice within the industry plus publicising the safe and sustainable use of pesticides.

The NSTS was set up as part of the Sustainable Use Directive (Plant Protection Product Regulations 2012) to improve the standard of equipment and compliance. It provides testing for all types of Pesticide Application Equipment (PAE) – including; granular, liquid, fogging & fertiliser applicators and currently tests over 20,000 machines per year.

The frequency of National Sprayer Testing Scheme checks on a sprayer (after it is over 5 years old) will depend around the boom length*. Not only does it place a value on protecting human health & the environment but there is added value in the scheme to reduce costs by virtue of correct application volumes and no leaks.

Knapsack, handheld & pedestrian sprayers do not have to be tested but need to be inspected regularly by a ‘competent’ person to ensure it is serviceable and fit for use. A ‘competent’ person is someone with experience and knowledge of the sprayer and ideally holds the relevant Certificate of Competence for applying pesticides. Any faults on examination need to be rectified and a record kept of the inspection. The National Sprayer Testing Scheme offer an example inspection sheet to view. You can also download our Knapsack Sprayer Routine Operator Checklist & a Personal Protective Equipment Inspection Checklist.

ProGreen offer many spare sprayer parts to repair old or used knapsacks. See also the Spray Record Book that contains handy information to stay compliant when recording pesticide applications.

For products, parts or more information see the quick links below, or call us on: 0800 032 6262

  1. Sprayers (hand held & knapsack)
  2. Cooper Pegler spare parts & service packs
  3. Nozzles
  4. Safety Clothing ∓ Personal Protective Equipment
  5. Spray Record Book

(*Crops and Fresh Produce Assurance Schemes have higher compliance requirements regarding pesticide equipment checks)