Section 18 to 20 of the Weights and Measures Act 1985 requires that operators of public weighbridges should be competent.

In this regard, they should have a certificate issued by a chief inspector of weights and measures showing that they have sufficient knowledge of their duties.

Section 18 creates for the first time the need for anyone who's paid to operate public weighing and measuring to hold a certificate from a chief inspector of weights and measures. This certificate states that the person has sufficient knowledge to properly perform their duties.

A certificate has validity in all areas. In the case of a refusal to grant, appeals can be directed to the Department for Business Innovation and Skills. Personal weighing or measuring machines are excluded.

The Trading Standards Service will arrange for intended operators to be tested and certificates issued.


Subject matter of the tests

  • The need for basic computer literacy and a knowledge of PC-based weighing instruments
  • The need to keep the instrument in correct balance or at gross zero for electronic or mechanical conversion instruments and the method by which the balance or zero is maintained
  • The meaning of the terms 'gross', 'tare' and 'net' weight and the ability to record a weighing correctly
  • The operation of the instrument, ticket printing and recording mechanisms
  • Common faults likely to lead to inaccuracy in weighing, particularly badly or incorrectly located loads, fouling between the load receptor and surround, flooding of pit, dirt on load receptor
  • The precautions to be observed in weighing vehicles, particularly proper visibility of the load receptor; proper positioning of the vehicle and ensuring that no one is on the vehicle during weighing
  • The need for level approaches to the weighbridge load receptor where a double weighing is permitted (not permitted for trade transactions) and the need to record each axle weighing separately
  • The responsibilities imposed on keepers of public weighing equipment by section 20 of the Act
  • The making out of documents: in particular the obligatory insertion of dates and times of weighings; details of tare and gross weighings not to be entered in a single document unless the interval between the two weighings was less than 24 hours; documents not to be handed to drivers (or otherwise issued) with blank spaces for recording details of tare weights or net weights (ie if there are no weight entries in one or more spaces provided for that purpose, the space or spaces should either be crossed through or cancelled by inserting words such as 'not ascertained' or 'vehicle not tared'); all entries and cancellations on document to be made indelibly; alterations to be avoided
  • The requirements for keepers of public weighing equipment to record each weighing and to retain the records for at least two years
  • If you are a Public Weighbridge Operator and require a licence for one of staff please email and mark the email for the attention of NELMP.

Public weighbridges in Havering

Crow Metals Recycling
Crow Lane
Telephone: 01708 749031