Rope Access Training Courses

Rope Access, what is it and where did it come from?

Rope access is a working at height discipline that incorporates techniques derived from the recreational activities of caving and climbing. Essentially work positioning or (Positioning of the worker) allows Technicians safe access to difficult-to-reach locations without having to rely on conventional means of access such as:  Scaffold, or other types of working platform. Rope access technicians work in suspension and use ropes and personal PPE for support while climbing, descending and traversing ropes. The methodology used in rope access is such that should the primary rope system fail a back-up system provides the necessary redundancy to further reduce the likelihood of a fall. Rope access technicians for this reason use two independent ropes - a working line and a back-up line.


Useful links for more information;

What is IRATA?

Training & Certification

IRATA Publications

Industrial rope access is used in a wide range of industries and jobs, including offshore oil and gas, civil engineering and construction. Some common applications include:
  • Non-destructive testing (NDT)
  • Visual inspection and survey work
  • Maintenance and industrial cleaning
  • Construction activities involving buildings, bridges and dams
  • Towers, masts and pylons
  • Wind turbines and geological slope stabilisation and netting
  • Aerial photography
  • Historic and listed buildings
  • Confined spaces
  • Mastic and sealant application
  • Glazing installation, repair and replacement
  • Erection of signage and hanging of barriers
  • Safety netting

Rope Access techniques are reputed to demonstrate an effective and cost reducing alternative to conventional access methods such as scaffolding or building maintenance units. Rope access involves the use of work positioning techniques and is a proven method of achieving a safe work position at height or in difficult to reach areas.

Safety is absolute in all that we do, we report all accidents and incidents and welcome bad news. We want people to tell us what they think we don’t want to hear. All accident, incident and near miss occurrences are recorded in order to evaluate and compare the information. This is inline with industry expectations and that of IRATA and other trade associations. This can highlight trends in incidents and assists in the development of equipment and procedures allowing continual improvement to work practices.

WASA Report 2013 IRATA work and Safety analysis

IATS Ltd is a Trainer and Operator member of IRATA International, the Industrial Rope Access Trade Association.

We are proud to offer certified IRATA Instructors with a wealth of experience to provide training and certification for IRATA technicians at Levels 1, 2 and 3.

The entry-level qualification at level 1 is designed for people aged 18 years+ with no industrial rope access experience. The course duration is 5 days and is designed in such a way as to build and develop your skills throughout the week. People should feel confident that they are fully competent in all techniques used during the course including fundamental rescue techniques. This will enable delegates to work under the supervision of an IRATA level 3 supervisor.

The level 2 qualification is designed for level 1 technicians’ who have held their qualification for a minimum of 12 months and have 1000 recorded hours of work at level 1. The duration of the course is 5 days and involves more complex rope tasks, rigging, and undertaking rescues and relevant legislation, guidelines and standards.

The level 3 supervisors course is for people aged 21 years+ already in possession of a level 2 qualification who wish to progress onto level 3. A minimum of 12 months experience is required as a level 2 which must include various work situations and techniques. The duration of this course is 5 days. Delegates must hold valid first aid and medical certificates.

Level 3 course covers all of the Level 1 and 2 syllabuses, in addition it also covers advanced hauling systems, rigging and rescue. This comprehensive course also looks at risk assessment, method statements, legislation and formal equipment inspection.  Level 3 technicians’ are qualified to supervise any IRATA site work.

The possibilities are endless and it’s worth remembering that IRATA rope access courses are very physically demanding and require a degree of core strength and fitness. An aptitude for working at height is essential. Our training venue at 10 meters will help better prepare you for that all-important operational role. The above points should be considered prior to enrolling on a course. Candidates who are not physically fit, or do not have an aptitude for work at height, may be unable to complete the course. It is a requirement to sign a medical declaration at the start of the course.

IRATA Qualifications at all levels are valid for 3 years from when the assessment takes place. At the end of 3 years all technicians must undergo full retraining. If a technician does not complete any rope access hours for a period of 6 months, they will be required to complete refresher training. The duration of the refresher training will depend on the delegates needs and does not need to be a full training course.

IATS Ltd only use IRATA (Industrial Rope Access Trade Association) assessed and qualified Rope Access Technicians. Our rope access and working at height training conforms to BS 7985 (Code of practice for the use of rope access for industrial purposes).
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