Industrial Rope Access refers to techniques by which access is gained to the exterior walls of buildings or other structures (such as monuments) by means of ropes. It applies to all cases where:
- People descend or ascend on a rope;
- Ropes are used as the primary means of support for these individuals; and
- Ropes are used as the primary means of protection or positioning for these individuals.
In the interest of public safety, any person using industrial rope access technology, and swing or support seats as indicated below, as a form of single-point adjustable suspension scaffolding shall be a licensed rigger (special or master rigger) and shall submit a “Notification of Use” (CD5) form to the Cranes and Derricks Unit.
The applicant must meet the requirements of the New York City Building Code as well as the requirements for filing Hanging Scaffolds applications including the maintenance of a valid rigger's license and insurance (PDF) (general liability, disability and workers' compensation) and the submission of all supporting documentation, including plans locating support points, lifelines, support lines, and site protection at street level.
Each applicant shall provide the CD5 application stating the following:
- All persons using individual support lines will be either:
- under the direct supervision of the applicant and either Society of Professional Rope Access Technicians (SPRAT) or Industrial Rope Access Trade Association (IRATA) certified; or
- licensed engineers/architects trained in accordance with SPRAT or IRATA guidelines and on full-belay (an active system that is operated by the applicant or a person under the applicant's direct supervision for the purpose of arresting the fall of a rope access worker).
All rigging/scaffolding is in compliance with Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulations.
All ropes, harnesses, and rigging equipment will be inspected and the inspections will be entered into a log by a qualified person (as defined by OSHA) within 24 hours of use on site.
All equipment will meet the standards and recommendations set forth in the SPRAT “Safe Practices for Rope Access Work” or in the IRATA “International Guidelines”.
All equipment will be securely tethered to the person/harness while each individual is suspended.
Single-point suspension lines will be used only for visual inspection and/or non-destructive investigation and no construction work or repairs will be performed.
If an individual will be suspended on the industrial rope access equipment for over a one and one-half hour period, a swing or support seat will also be used.
The maximum load will not exceed 250 lbs per line (per OSHA).
The following shall be kept at the site and made available for inspection by the Department:
- Copies of the CD5 application and approved drawings;
- Certificates of fitness or rigger's license for all persons on the lines (unless such persons are licensed engineers/architects);
- Proof of certification from either SPRAT or IRATA for all persons on the lines (unless such persons are licensed engineers/architects); and
- A copy of the inspection log for the industrial rope access equipment.
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