FAQ's

1. What is Rope Access?

IRATA International’s rope access system is a safe method of working at height where ropes and associated equipment are used to gain access to and from the work place and be suspended at the worksite for the duration of the work.

The advantage of using rope access methods lies in the safety and efficiency with which workers can get to or from difficult locations to carry out their work, often with minimal impact on plant operations. Another benefit of rope access is a cumulative reduction in exposure to working at height risk when compared with other means of access and their historical associated risks. 

2. Why Choose Irata

The Industrial Rope Access Trade Association (IRATA International) includes within its membership operating companies, training companies and technicians. Technicians are those who have learned their skills from the training companies of the Association. The teaching of the IRATA syllabus enables rope access technicians to progress through three levels of proficiency, with certification issued at each level. The IRATA technician carries a card that is recognised globally for its importance and value; over 110,000 IRATA technicians have been registered in over fifty countries and in every continent. The thorough, IRATA training program delivers a skilled workforce that can reliably deliver work-at-height methodologies.

IRATA Instructors are specialists and experts in their field who have theoretical and practical teaching skills. Their individual abilities and the training centers where they work are regularly and independently assessed to ensure that training is being delivered to the highest global standards.

3. How do I become qualified?

IRATA International has a formal training and certification scheme, and grading structure and all IRATA International members are obliged to use this scheme. Rope access technicians are grouped into three technical grades, depending upon their experience and level of assessment as set out in the IRATA International publication Training, Assessment and Certification Scheme (TACS).

The Training, Assessment and Certification Scheme (TACS) document has been developed by IRATA to provide training and assessment criteria for personnel who will be engaged in rope access work and methods. It is recognised that the safety, application and effectiveness of industrial rope access methods depend upon both the capabilities of the personnel who perform them and those responsible for these people. The independent assessments are designed to test the candidate's knowledge and understanding of the operations performed, and to provide the sector with an assured minimum standard of proficiency. Full details of the syllabus for each level are detailed in the Training, Assessment and Certification Scheme but in summary the following is required:

Level 1 rope access technician

A level 1 rope access technician shall be capable of performing a limited range of rope access tasks required by his or her employers, under the supervision of an IRATA level 3 rope access technician. He/she is:

  • responsible for inspections of all his/her own personal rope access equipment
  • able to assist in rigging and non-standard operations, under the guidance of a higher grade
  • able to undertake a rescue involving descent by him/herself and have a knowledge of hauling systems

NOTE: A level 1 rope access technician is not allowed to supervise others.


Level 2 rope access technician

A level 2 rope access technician shall be capable of rigging working ropes, undertaking rescues and performing rope access tasks (under the supervision of an IRATA level 3 rope access technician). He/she should have some knowledge of legislation, safety requirements and quality assurance procedures relating to rope access.

Level 3 rope access technician

A level 3 rope access technician shall:

  • be capable of site supervision for rope access work projects
  • be conversant with relevant work techniques and legislation
  • be able to demonstrate all the skills and knowledge required of levels 1 and 2
  • have a comprehensive knowledge of advanced rescue techniques
  • hold an appropriate current first aid certificate, to show that suitable emergency first aid training has been undertaken
  • have knowledge of the IRATA certification scheme
  • have knowledge of the IRATA Training, Assessment and Certification Scheme
  • be familiar with the contents of the IRATA ICOP

4. How long does my qualification last?

Certification at all levels is valid for three years.

5. How do I revalidate/keep current?

IRATA International certificates shall be renewed within three years of the date of assessment.

If revalidation training and successful assessment are completed in the six-month period prior to the expiry of a current certificate, a new certificate shall be issued with an expiry date three years from the date of expiry of the previous certificate.

All revalidating candidates are required to complete a minimum of four days of training prior to assessment.

6. What if I don’t get work on ropes, what is refresher training?

Your ticket remains valid until the date of expiry. However, if rope access technicians do not use rope access methods for a period of more than six months they are required to undergo refresher training prior to commencing rope access work. The training should be appropriate for each individual and should be recorded in his or her logbook.

Refresher training:

  • Shall be carried out by an IRATA International Level 3 rope access technician
  • Shall not be carried out during operational duties
  • May involve the need to undergo a full training course

Vertech are able to provide refresher training for both individuals and companies. For more information please contact us via email: training@vertech.com.au

7. What about upgrading to become a level 2 or 3?

9. What level of fitness do I need?

Rope access is a physically demanding trade. Candidates should be physically fit and unaffected by any disability or medical condition that may prevent them from working safely. Candidates shall ensure that they have an adequate level of fitness, are physically able to perform the tasks expected in terms of strength, agility and co-ordination, and are able to withstand the stresses of the working environment such as heat, cold, and other inclement weather.

10. Are there jobs out there after the course?

Rope access is a growing industry and there are many opportunities out there for qualified rope access techs. Job search websites and dedicated Facebook groups are great places to look for vacancies.

11. What time do we start and what do I need to bring?

Start time: 8am

Finish: 4pm

What to Wear: Wear comfortable clothing (shorts, hiking trousers, track pants. Clothing such as jeans can be too restricting and uncomfortable when in a harness). Wear closed-toed shoes, trainers or hiking boots - you don’t need steel cap boots.

Address: 19 Walters Drive, Osborne Park, WA 6017

12. Is there parking onsite?

Yes. There is limited parking on-site that is available on a first come, first serve basis. However, there is also ample on-street parking.

13. Do I need any previous experience for L1?

None at all. We take people from diverse backgrounds in the working world who may never have even touched a rope or harness and give you all the training you need. 

14. What prerequisites are there?

Pre training Requirements General

To work safely in rope access requires those engaged in the work to have an appropriate attitude and aptitude in addition to a good level of fitness and physical capability. If unsure, an appraisal session should be arranged with an IRATA International trainer member company.

An aptitude for work at height includes not only having ‘a head for heights’, but also an appropriate level of responsibility and self-reliance. A healthy respect for heights remains an advantage; over-confident or reckless workers may present greater risks than the cautious.

Rope access work locations are often remote. It is therefore important that operatives can be relied upon to behave in a sensible and responsible manner.

The trainer member company has the right to exclude any candidate from training if they have concerns over the candidate’s health and/or fitness or attitude to safety during training.

Candidates shall be at least 18 years of age at the start of the course. Candidates are required to certify that they do not have any medical disabilities or contraindications that may prevent them from working safely. 

Pre-training requirements: upgrading to Levels 2 or 3.

Candidates applying to upgrade shall be competent in all practical and theory requirements of their current level prior to attendance of an upgrade course. E.g. an existing Level 1 attending a Level 2 course shall be capable of performing all Level 1 techniques and answering Level 1 theory questions prior to the start of a Level 2 course.

Candidates who are not competent at their existing level may require additional training. As little time is available on upgrade courses for refresher training, pre-course evaluation is recommended to verify the candidates’ current level of competence. 

Candidates seeking to upgrade shall ensure that:

  • Their current certification is still valid on the day of assessment;
  • They have the necessary 12 months experience and 1000 working hours recorded and signed in their logbook.

Rope access technicians who are upgrading or revalidating shall provide their logbooks to the IRATA International trainer member company at the start of the training course. Where rope access technicians have lost their logbooks, they shall arrange for a replacement to be issued, completed and verified before assessment.

15. Do I have to have a working at heights ticket, will I get one at the end of the course?

You’re not required to have a WAH ticket to complete IRATA training and assessment. While a work at height ticket is not compulsory to perform rope access it may be required by some employers and/or contractors. Note that a Working at Height ticket is a separate qualification. 

16. What happens if I can’t make the course?

We understand that circumstances change and this may mean you can’t attend the training.

Where a candidate has to apply for a date change a credit will be issued which will be valid for a one year period. The credit amount will be determined by the amount of notice given:

  • 5 + Business Days: 100% Credit note.*
  • 2 - 4 Business Days: 50% Credit note. (Where the vacancy can be filled at short notice 100% will be credited)*
  • 1 Business Day notice: forfeit all course fees.

*(Rebooking is subject to availability)

  • Refund of course fees will only be offered under extenuating circumstances and at the discretion of Vertech.
  • The above conditions are valid for one date change. Subsequent date changes will incur an administration fee of $50.
  • Should a participant fail to attend on the day of the course without notice, course fees will be forfeited.
  • No refund will be offered in the event a participant decides she or he no longer wishes to complete full course.
  • The Trainer of the course is permitted to withdraw any participant from the course if they have any concerns in regards to health or safety.

17. I am told that assessment is sometimes on a Saturday

Depending on the availability of assessors you may be assessed on a Friday or Saturday. While Saturday assessments are rare we’ll make sure that you’re notified of this in advance.

18. What do I get when I pass the course?

Upon successful completion of your assessment you will receive a copy of your assessment day form, which acts as your ticket and is valid for 60 days. This means you can work immediately.

Before that 60 day period is up your paperwork will be processed by IRATA and you’ll receive a new log book, card and certificate. (Previously qualified techs will only receive a new card and cert having been previously been issued with a log book.)

19. Company Bookings

If you’d like to pay via a Purchase Order please contact us for a quote.

20. What can I do if the course I want is full?

The number of trainees we can have on a course is governed by IRATA and determined by the Trainer-to-Student ratio so unfortunately once we’re at capacity we can’t add another trainee. We can offer you a non-committal place on our standby list and should a candidate withdraw from the course we will contact you.

To be placed on this list please email us direct at Training@vertech.com.au and include the following information:

  • Name
  • Contact phone number/email
  • Preferred course date
  • Current IRATA level if applicable
  • Details if you are already booked on another one of our courses

21. Can I get on a standby list?

We can offer you a non-committal place on our standby list and should a candidate withdraw from the course we will contact you.

To be placed on this please email us direct at Training@vertech.com.au and provide the below information:

  • Name
  • Contact phone number/email
  • Preferred course date
  • Current IRATA level if applicable
  • Details if you are already booked on another one of our courses

22. Can I transfer my course dates

We understand that circumstances change and this may mean you can’t attend the training.

Where a candidate has to apply for a date change a credit will be issued which will be valid for a one year period. The credit amount will be determined by the amount of notice given:

  • 5 + Business Days: 100% Credit note.*
  • 2 - 4 Business Days: 50% Credit note. (Where the vacancy can be filled at short notice 100% will be credited)*
  • 1 Business Day notice: forfeit all course fees.

*(Rebooking is subject to availability)

  • Refund of course fees will only be offered under extenuating circumstances and at the discretion of Vertech.
  • The above conditions are valid for one date change. Subsequent date changes will incur an administration fee of $50. 

23. What is a refresher and how can I book one?

If no rope work has been performed for six months, technicians must undergo relevant training suitable to the work intended, this can be done on-site, by an IRATA Level 3. The refresher training must be documented in the candidates log book & signed by the IRATA L3.

24. Whats the difference between refresher and a revalidation training?

Refresher training is intended to revise and update knowledge and skills.

Revalidation training is a course delivering the entire syllabus at a given level, leading to assessment and, if successful, renewal of certification.

25. What happens if I lose my Logbook

If any rope access technician loses their logbook, they should replace it immediately and, where possible, obtain references for the hours they have lost. Where lost hours are required to move up a level, e.g. Level 1 to Level 2, the candidate shall obtain credible references to verify the hours they have lost. Maintaining a scanned copy can guard against such problems.

To order a replacement technicians must contact IRATA direct at:  LogBookRequest@irata.org

26. What are log books for? How do I use one?

The purpose of the logbook is to record the rope access technician’s experience and training. This includes the total hours engaged in rope access, the type and variety of work undertaken, and when the work took place. Rope access technicians wishing to upgrade to Level 2 or Level 3 cannot be considered for assessment without a correctly maintained and up to date logbook.

How to complete the work experience section of a logbook

Under the heading Date, work shall be recorded in the logbook in time periods of no more than two weeks. Where rope access technicians work on more than one site in a day, the tasks should be entered separately, unless very similar.

Under the heading Employing Company, the name of the employing company shall be recorded.

Under the heading Details of task being undertaken, both the nature of the work and the access methods employed shall be described, e.g.

  • Window cleaning: descent on ropes; basic rigging
  • Installing fall-arrest nets: aid-climbing; retrievable rigging
  • Inspection of steelwork: ascent and descent on ropes; aid climbing; tensioned lines

Under the heading Location, rope access technicians shall briefly describe the type of structure worked on e.g. 

  • Concrete tower block
  • Steel-framed warehouse
  • Flare stack; oil platform

Under the heading Hours worked, an accurate reflection of the time spent directly engaged in rope access activities shall be recorded. In addition to time spent on the main task noted under Details of task being undertaken, this may include time spent rigging and de-rigging ropes, inspecting rope access equipment, and toolbox talks. It shall not include other time spent on site such as meal-breaks, waiting for permits or down-time due to weather. For this reason, logged hours are typically less than those paid or entered on timesheets.

Under the heading Max height worked, an accurate reflection of the maximum height spent working at height while carrying out rope access tasks shall be recorded.

Under the heading Supervisor’s signature, all logbook entries shall be countersigned by the supervising Level 3 rope access technician, who shall log their name (printed clearly), signature and unique IRATA International number. 

NOTE: Rope access technicians wishing to upgrade who are unable to provide Level 3 signatures should contact an IRATA training Member Company prior to booking on a course.

Under the heading Total hours for this page, the total hours logged on that page shall be added up and recorded.  Under the heading Running total of hours worked, hours carried over from the previous page are added to Total hours for this page and then recorded.

27. Payment methods

Individual:

1.     Pay in full by Credit card using this link http://vertech-com-au.3dcartst...
2.     Bank Transfer as per Registration form. This is available by emailing us at Training@vertech.com.au

Company:

1.     Pay in full Credit card using this link http://vertech-com-au.3dcartst...
2.     Via Purchase orders, contact Training@vertech.com.au

28. Can I pay in instalments or do I have to pay straight-up?

Yes, but only if you pay by bank transfer and the full amount must be paid prior to the course starting.

This is available by emailing us at Training@vertech.com.au

29. Do we hire out equipment?

No. All the equipment you require is provided and none is available to hire for external use.

30. How long is the course?

Full IRATA course: 5 days which encompasses 4 days training and a 1 day assessment.

Refresher Training: Takes place over the course of a day and depending on the needs of an individual can range from 4 – 8 hrs.

31. What time do I need to arrive in the morning?

The facility is open from 7.30am with training starting at 8am and typically finishing at 4pm

32. I have more questions!

We have the answers! Contact us through first through Training@vertech.com.au.

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