Newsletter – Winter 2017




The Mast and Tower Safety Group is an industry forum for owners and operators of masts and towers in the UK used for broadcast and telecommunications. The group’s main purpose is to provide Health and Safety /RF guidance to the industry.

This newsletter is intended to provide an update on recently published guidance, current issues, and what’s on the horizon.

And remember its only 50 days to Christmas!


MATS Approved Basic Tower Climber and Rescue Course


MATS will be introducing during 2018 this course to ensure a consistently high standard of training is being delivered across the industry. The final stage of consultation is taking place and once this has been carried out the course will be formally introduced via the training companies presently approved on the Arqiva database.

Discussions are on-going with potential partners in respect of how the training centres and standard of delivery is audited and what the associated costs for registration maybe.


MATS Annual Conference 2018


The first MATS annual conference was held at the Network Rail Conference Centre in Warwickshire and was a huge success. We have agreed to run a similar event and it will be probably held during April.  Full details will be released very soon.

We will be inviting a guest speaker for 2018 year to talk about some thought provoking industry related issues.

Please feel free to make suggestions on topics that you feel we may wish to address at the conference.


Competency Log Book


Extensive discussions have taken place around this and it seems the common view is that the industry should require climbers to logging their climbs / hours to demonstrate the competency levels they have.

It seems there are companies who have apps to address this and this will be further explored during 2018 with a view to MATS partnering or at least directing companies to a suitable app. If anyone has an existing app (or similar) that me be able to be used by a wider audience, please contact:


Winter Driving


With the darker nights and temperatures set to plummet it is a timely to remind employees and contractors to drive safely this winter.  Babcock have produced a guide which is available here:


Head warmers under helmets


As the nights start to draw in and temperatures begin to drop, it’s important to ensure that individuals keep warm whilst working outside – though don’t forget you can also still overheat with lots of layers and physical activity!

A safety helmet is a vital piece of PPE for those working on or in the vicinity of masts and towers and are designed to withstand a single impact that will hopefully save a life.   As specified by the HSE, head protection should fit the person wearing it and be worn properly.  It is often tempting at this time of year to wear a hoodie, beanie or other garment underneath the hard had in order to keep heads warm.

Whilst this might seem like a good idea as we tend to lose most of our body head through our heads, doing this actually interferes with the fit of the hard hat harness meaning that the hard hat cannot be properly fitted or adjusted in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.  If the manufacturer instructions cannot be followed properly then individuals are putting themselves at risk as the hard hat was not designed or tested for use in those conditions.  In addition, a hoodie can also reduce your field of vision.

The solution is to ensure that you only wear and use a head warmer that has been approved by the manufacturer specifically for use with their products.  Whatever approved garment you chose, don’t forget to make sure it is still compatible with other PPE such as hearing protection.


RF Safety Course – Arqiva Approved


This course will be advertised as MATS approved from 2018. The course will still be an Arqiva requirement but we feel this is a significant step in showing that MATS will be the face of the industry going forward.


Recent MATS Group Publications


Useful Links:

National Register of RF Workers

IOSH Communications and Media Group


MATS Group Members


MATS members include:

  • Airwave Motorola Solutions
  • Arqiva
  • Babcock
  • BT
  • Cellnex Telecom (Shere)
  • CTIL
  • EE
  • GCHQ
  • KCOM Group
  • MoD
  • NATS
  • National Crime Agency
  • Network Rail Telecom
  • O2 Telefonica
  • Wireless Infrastructure Group (WIG)
  • Vodafone




Look out for the next MATS Group newsletter in Spring 2018 and if you have any articles for inclusion please email