Learning the Ropes: What Does a Rope Access Technician Do, And Why Do I Need to Hire One?

Do you run your business from a building with 100-foot vaulted ceilings so there is space for manufacturing? What do you do when you need to change a lightbulb? What about cleaning the pillars and vaults? You need a rope access technician.

There were 5,250 fatal work accidents in 2018. A number of them were the result of using the wrong person for the job. Avoid injuries to your own staff by hiring the people who are trained to get these types of jobs done right, safely.

What’s a Rope Access Technician?

This specialized industrial technician handles a whole set of different jobs on a variety of different job sites. This individual handles anything and everything that requires the use of a rope and harness in an industrial setting.

These skilled techs scale the largest structures to maintain or repair them.

Picture an entire field full of wind turbines. These massive structures dominate the landscape and are set in hundreds of rows for miles along the road. Now, every wind turbine requires routine maintenance and checkups 2-3 times per year.

Who is the brave soul tasked with this job? A rope access technician! Same idea for gigantic suspension bridges or other structures only reachable via rope and pulley. Rope access work is for the folks that love the rush, aren’t afraid of heights, and are willing to put their lives in the literal line.

How Do You Become a Rope Access Tech?

Ropes access training requires a rigorous formal training process. The two major internationally recognized institutes for ropes training are International Rope Access and Trade Association (IRATA) and the Society for Professional Rope Access Technicians (SPRAT).

These organizations were formed in the late 1980s and early 90s as a response to the major oil and gas sectors needing a safer way to do business for its workers.

Before you begin training you’re required to have the following existing knowledge set and meet these requirements:

  • Previous knowledge and experience with rope in climbing
  • Working knowledge of the basic set of rope knots used in climbing
  • A doctor’s note certifying your physical fitness
  • You must be 18 years old

You’ll go through a training course and they will test your physical and mental capability to perform the job.

The trainers of these courses have thousands of hours of experience in the field and make sure the student is able and ready to perform the role before giving them a certification.

Why You Need to Hire Rope Access Technicians

There are a number of job sites and industries that should be using certified industrial ropes access techs for their projects. If your site is high enough to need more than a standard ladder or lift will reach in height it’s time to bring in the professionals.

Certified techs can perform jobs commercial sector jobs like:

  • Post-construction cleanup
  • Window Washing
  • Caulking and Sealing
  • Lighting maintenance, replacement and conversion
  • Sign repair and maintenance
  • Vent cleaning including dryer vents
  • Screen replacement
  • Cleaning Needs
  • Envelope inspection and crack sealing
  • Leak repair and mechanical shaft services
  • General inspections

The list goes on to include a number of industrial applications as well:

  • Lighting maintenance, replacement and conversion
  • Heat trace troubleshooting, installation and maintenance, including splicing
  • Lighting maintenance and LED retrofit
  • Cable pull
  • Infrared thermography

If you’re working on any job site with height involved chances are you need to call these techs in to handle the work.

The setup time is minimal compared to the old ways of a man in a swing. This means the project will stay on the timeline and be more efficient than having someone inexperienced up there instead.

You’re also creating a greener workplace by eliminating a good bit of heavy machinery and bringing in a skilled tradesman instead. You’re saving not only in exhaust fumes but fuel and operator prices as well.

The other benefit of eliminating the huge and heavy machinery is a lighter and more agile site. This helps prevent the need to block huge portions of the roads and let’s traffic continue to flow past construction. It also makes it easier to work in smaller spaces and reach things you couldn’t with traditional methods.

What Makes Epic Rope Access Techs Different

Here at Epic Rope Access, we believe in only hiring the best technicians we can find. You can see some of our work at locations across Edmonton including bridges, malls, and refineries.

For instance, at the West Edmonton Mall, we retrofitted the metal halide lighting in the entrance of the Scotia Bank Theater to a modern LED lighting system. We were able to complete the entire project for less than what other companies were charging for a single light. We did all of our work without having to close off the mall and saved $60,000+ from the project’s budget.

All this to say, rope access technicians not only make your site safer and your project less intrusive but, they can also save you a ton of money in the end. These are all the reasons it’s best to hire a professional company to handle your heights.

Make Your Workplace Safer and Get the Job Done More Efficiently with a Certified Rope Access Technician

As you can see, it’s really a no brainer to hire on a professional rope access technician for your high-up needs. You’ll not only save time and money but avoid potentially fatal on-the-job accidents.

Contact us today at Epic Rope Access to let us convince you we are the best company for the job and give you a quote on your project today.

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