Bridge Inspector Certification Scheme (NHSS31)

Lantra runs an international certification scheme for bridge inspectors. The scheme is operated on behalf of the UK Bridges Board and the Irish National Roads Authority, and is supported by the Bridge Owners Forum. It is one of the most widely used National Highway Sector Schemes in the UK and has the full support of the Department of Transport (DfT).

The inspection of bridges and other structures is a key part of the management process employed by bridge owners to ensure that they are safe and fit for purpose. This is as set out in the 2005 UK Roads Liaison Group publication entitled Management of Highway Structures: A Code of Practice and BD63: Inspection of Highway Structures.

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E-Portfolio - What's New?

Important Update to your E-Portfolio! - 18 March 2019


Lantra, together with the Bridge Inspector Certification Scheme Committee would like to advise both existing and prospective Candidates that the Committee regularly review the Scheme and look for opportunities to improve and develop the Scheme. Changes to the e-Portfolio are part of this on-going improvement and development process.

Many of you have provided some valuable feedback about the e-Portfolio, specifically regarding the wording, that has been taken on board by the Committee. These changes will be implemented shortly and it is expected that this will be a seamless process and will not affect your existing or prospective e-Portfolio submissions.

As soon as we have a final date for the changes to be applied, you will receive an email advising you of the date of the proposed changes and assure you that these should not interfere with your existing and on-going work.

Please make sure we have the most up-to date e-mail address for you. You can do this by amending your e-mail address in your personal section on BICS.

Any further changes will be communicated to all Candidates in advance.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us

Lantra on behalf of the UK Bridges Board and the Transport Infrastructure Ireland (formerly the National Roads Authority Ireland), supported by the Bridge Owners Forum is pleased to announce a new international certification scheme developed for bridge inspectors.

It will run in the UK as one of the widely used National Highway Sector Schemes, and has the full support of the Department of Transport. It will be adopted in Ireland with support from the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport.

Bridge and other structure inspections form a key part of the management process employed by bridge owners to ensure that their assets are safe for use and fit for purpose. This is as set out in the 2005 UK Roads Liaison Group publication entitled ‘Management of Highway Structures: A Code of Practice (currently being updated), BD63 ‘Inspection of Highway Structures’ currently being updated by Highways England, and the Eirspan Bridge Management System Principal Inspection Manual currently being updated by Transport Infrastructure Ireland.

The benefits of this new scheme will include:

  • Proof of competence. This scheme will result in clarity of the experience and skills required by bridge inspectors, for Inspectors and Senior Inspectors. This will assist bridge owners with the specification of skills required, both internally and externally
  • Formalisation of knowledge and experience required by inspectors. This will result in effectively trained inspectors and hence improved levels of consistency in undertaking inspections, capturing defects, more informative and accurate inspection reports and interpretation of results
  • The ability to better prioritise limited maintenance budgets as a result of greater consistency in the recommendations from bridge inspections
  • An increase in the profile/standing of bridge inspectors via the introduction of a nationally recognised scheme. The different levels of competence would also provide a structured path for career progression, which would assist in staff retention and long-term capture of vital knowledge
  • Transferrable skills - Increased flexibility for organisations in moving inspection staff around and sharing them with other sector
  • A structured approach to promote continued learning of bridge inspectors. Up to date developments and innovation within the industry can be identified where relevant for use in inspections.

The Bridge Inspector Certification Scheme covers detailed competencies around the inspection of common structure forms and materials, focusing largely on bridge, retaining wall and culvert assets constructed from masonry, steel and concrete; as well as awareness of other less common materials and assets.


Cheques and balances – why we need proper funding for bridge inspections

The first Senior Bridge Inspector under the new Bridge Inspector Scheme


  • E-portfolio fee = £50 + VAT / 70 euro
  • E-portfolio submitted for full review, assessment and feedback report generated = £525 + VAT
  • ‘Face-to-face’ interview with two Assessors, feedback report generated and SMART Card issued where candidate has been successful.
  • First year and annual (2nd year onward) registration of Bridge Inspector / Senior Bridge Inspector = £150 + VAT.

For general enquiries, please contact the Lantra Bridge Team.

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Assessor forms
Useful documents