What is Rope Access? Find out here.

What is Rope Access?

So you want to know what is rope access. Rope access is the term used to describe a system of working at height where access is gained to the job site using ropes and related equipment. It is considered a safe, quick and cost effective method for accessing difficult locations.

Why use Rope Access?

The key benefits of using rope access lie in its speed and safety compared to alternative access methods such as scaffolding, ladders, cranes and boom lifts. By using rope access technicians the level of risk associated with working at height is often vastly reduced. The system usually requires less equipment and machinery, sidewalk obstruction and causes less workplace impact.

The end result of faster, safer execution of projects is a lower cost with less impact on businesses.

What are the best uses for Rope Access?

There are few limits to the type of jobs that can be carried out quickly and safely using rope access.

Window Cleaning Technicians rappelling down skyscrapers is a sight many will be familiar with. Cleaning, painting and repairing structures such as bridges, sports stadiums and pylons would be impossible without employing rope access techniques.

The surveying and inspection of civil structures, churches and rock faces is best carried out using rope access techniques.

The oil and gas industry is well known for its use of rope access on offshore platforms and onshore drilling installations as it is ideal for accessing shafts, confined spaces and tall derricks. Rope access is very widely used in the movie industry.

The preservation of America’s historic buildings is carried out by using rope access techniques due to their low level of impact on the environment.

Rope Access Technicians carrying out Geotechnical work inside a sea cave.


Is the industry regulated?

Rope access is overseen internationally by IRATA and in the United States by SPRAT. Both organizations strictly regulate what standard all rope access companies and technicians must adhere to. IRATA was formed over 20 years ago in the UK and has overseen the huge growth in the industry (approx. 10x the size of the current US market) there while maintaining a great safety record.

Is Rope Access growing in the US?

Very much so. Our training partners have never been busier with new rope access technicians being training in IRATA and SPRAT training courses across the country. Companies are switching on to the potential to use rope access techniques to solve their maintenance, NDT, cleaning and construction problems.

What are the job opportunities like in the rope access industry?

Good and getting better all the time! Due to the growth in the industry there is a shortage of qualified, experienced rope access technicians. This is being addresses by the training centers in every state but there is a huge opportunity to earn great money.

So how do I get into the business?

Register with us. We will give you free, independent advice on how you can break into this industry and start earning great money while learning a new skill. We can put you in touch with training companies, access companies and kit suppliers all over the country.

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