How to become a Rope Access Technician

If you love to climb and feel the rush of adrenaline, here is your chance to finally turn your passion into a full-time career. Rope access technicians are specialists in accessing high altitudes locations using rope and safety gear. This sort of access is required in rescues, for high level constructions, oil rigs, etc. The ability of a rope access technician to keep cool in strenuous situations and maintain the safety of the entire project is vital to their success. Do you have what it takes to become a rope access technician?

Getting Certified
To get certified at one or more of these levels, you will need to clear a final test. The assessment lasts for a day after approximately 4-5 days of training. It is meant to test the skills you have mastered over the period of the course. It is the way to show the instructor that you have what it takes to become a rope access technician who will not endanger your own life or the life of anyone around you. With a good amount of preparation, lots of practice and a good fitness program, you can give yourself the right leverage to clear this assessment with flying colors.

There is some amount of formal training involved before you can be considered as industry ready. International Rope Access and Trade Association (IRATA) and the Society for Professional Rope Access Technicians (SPRAT) are two major internationally recognized institutes for Rope access training. IRATA teachers must meet certain criteria and such is not the case with SPRAT. Both IRATA and SPRAT reputable programs, but SPRAT has a strong North American reputation while  IRATA has world-wide recognition.

While these are US based organisations, you can always check for Indian institutes that offer the same training or its equivalent.

The training at these institutions is conducted by highly experienced rope access technicians and climbers with thousands of hours of experience. To be considered eligible for the training, there is some amount of knowledge you should already master. This includes:
● Familiarity with using rope in climbing, recreation or window cleaning
● Knowledge of tying rope knots like figure of eight, double figure of eight on the bight, barrel knot, overhand knot and alpine butterfly
● Certified for physical fitness by a medical doctor
● Minimum age of eligibility is 18 years

As a Pre Course preparation, do some warm up (gentle exercises) for a week of vertical exercise. You don’t need to do anything vigorous as a pull-up.

The IRATA assessor marks your assessment day. These assessors are in-date level three certified with dozens of experience in the industry. Witnessing every form of practice be it good or bad, they have experienced every excuse for mistakes. Their main concern is in the belief that people can turn up to work with a safe approach. Feel free to question and be questioned from these assessors with up-to-date technical information.

The Rules of Engagement
You will be asked questions because the assessors want to know if you understand the reason behind each manoeuvre. They’ll point out important minor faults like un-loved screw-gate so you know where to improvise. Only two minor discrepancies are allowed and if the third one occurs, it means a fail. Also, you need to keep a back-up device. Being careless with its positioning may mean a minor discrepancy, and if you forget it by letting it hang at your ankles, that will lead to a fail. The main point to focus on is not to finish up hanging from one point of contact, or one rope. Keep this in mind in every single operation at all costs.

As Level 2 or Level 3 technicians, you may be asked to do things you haven’t done in your training, but in Level 1, these will only ask you things you have done in training.

Don’t be distressed thinking that you’ll be asked to operate under crazy time pressure because that isn’t the case. Your assessors will only try to observe if you can apply your learned principles to a slightly novel problem. You will be told then and there in case you fail, so don’t give up on hope after you notice that you have done a few blunders. Until they tell you, you are in the game.

You need to put together your harness rigs for safety. So, practice doing that a couple of times before. Also, since you’ll be asked to fault find if your harness is dodgy, you should so practice that too.
You’ll be required to ascend sets of ropes at the start, regardless of assessment level. Just go at your own pace without panicking.
Avoid over-focusing during each activity. Additionally, make sure that you do the more complex stuff in methodical stages and before you operate a new system, you must do a ‘function check’. When in a difficult situation, think about something completely different like a romantic incident, fishes or your favorite things and then re-examine the system once again.
It is important to check your screw-gates before each manoeuvre and then see the two separate connections you have and count them, and be ready with the third. Avoid the critical pose of two or three connectors to one anchor.
Keep in mind the casualty care and the sequence of responses chosen. Keep your ropes and the casualties ropes out of the way. No matter how slow you are in your final descent, if you have any type of backup device that could steal the glory.
Done it!
You can enter rope access field now. You could be anywhere now from huge bridges to oil rights, skyscrapers to cliff face stabilizations, and anywhere that required working at height.

Levels of Qualification
It is important to complete formal training and acquire a technical grade in order to become a rope access technician. As per IRATA International, the training, assessment and certification scheme is valid for all IRATA members. There are three levels at which you can be certified for rope access technician, depending on your level of training and experience, according to IRATA:
● Level 1: Level 1 training is recommended for those with little to no Industrial Rope Access experience so that they are certified to perform simple rescues.
● Level 2: A level 2 personnel who has logged 1000 hours of rope access work together with one year of work experience can go in for level 2 training.
● Level 3: A level 3 person shows high technical skill at conducting rope access while maintaining site safety. They also possess advanced rigging and rescue knowledge, hold a first aid certificate, and have knowledge of legislation and IRATA training.

Jobs for rope access technicians

A broad range of jobs in difficult-to-access areas are available for Rope access technicians. This includes:
working in confined spaces (e.g. water tanks, cooling towers, boilers and shafts)’, non-destructive testing (NDT); geotechnical work (e.g. rockfall netting, rock demolition, and soil stabilization); facade maintenance (e.g. building maintenance and repair); rigging services (e.g. marketing, promotional, and seasonal displays in public spaces); working on oil rigs; window cleaning in high-rise buildings; and also renewable energy (e.g. wind farm maintenance and repairs).

How safe are these jobs?
For the inexperienced, working at heights or in confined spaces can be dangerous. In early 1900s, rope access technicians had to complete their work using the Bosun’s Chair, i.e, a plank of wood that is used as a seat at the end of a rope rather than the the safety harnesses used now. The technicians faced a far more dangerous situation at that time.

However, today, rope access technicians benefit from the excellent safety process – just as we do here at Mekanchi Global (with a 100% safety record).

Why Choose Mekanchi Global?

Mekanchi Global offers Rope Access enabled services (Industrial services and NDT), Non-Destructive Testing Services, , UAV Enabled Inspections, Dimensional Inspections, Engineering Consultancy and Trainings Programs through a diversified team of specialists and industry experts whose collective experience totals to more than 150 years. By joining forces with Mekanchi Global, you are giving yourself a competitive advantage over other industry entrants, and international opportunities for work exposure.

Contact us today to learn more about our rope access services on 9999805500 or send us an email at

What’s A Good Rope Access Technician Salary?

Considering a career in rope access? Here’s good news!

An experienced rope access technician can earn up to $200 a day but ofcourse, it takes a lot of study, time and hard work to get to that level.
Let’s brief you about the many factors affecting a rope access technician salary. Below is the three-tiered structure that any rope access technician fits into:
• Level 1
• Level 2
• Level 3

IRATA and SPRAT are the main training bodies that support this structure.

How to get Qualified for Rope Access?
To get a job in rope access, you’ve to complete level one IRATA or SPRAT assessment and get your certificate, without which no reputable rope access companies will hire you.

How much will the Training Courses cost you?
For Training courses, you’ll have to spend around $1,000 but passing these courses will surely unlock prospective earnings and you’ll earn your money back in no time.

What is the Rope Access Technician Salary?

If you are a qualified level one rope access technician, you can earn between $50 – $70 per day.
Level two rope access technicians get a salary between $70 and $85 per day and a qualified level three technician earns $100 and above on an average.
These salaries are averages taken across the markets of Asia, Middle East and Africa in 2017-18. Want to know what else can affect the range of your salary? It’s your ability to negotiate, the pay structure of your company, the certificates you possess and the living costs of your state.

What skills do you need?

Window cleaning isn’t a high paying job. With level one IRATA or SPRAT, it can get you less than someone who can repair a wind turbine or perform an Advanced NDT such as PEC.
For all those with a desirable skill, you can break into the rope access industry. All the qualified engineers and technicians, the companies that will hire you will pay for your IRATA assessments.
Getting their hours logged on rope, a tech with little or no skills will take up painting, window cleaning and other general maintenance jobs.

How many hours of work are required?

Rope access technicians have to their personal log book, containing a record of every hour that they spend on ropes. This books acts as a reference for your work history too.
Many companies request copies of your logbook while they’re in the process of hiring you. It is therefore important to maintain your logbook, update it regularly and have it signed by a supervisor/level 3. Also, you need to include the important details of the work, risks faced and action taken to avoid them.
After IRATA Level 1, you need at least one year and 1000 hours logged as a level one and you can progress to IRATA Level 2.
For Level 3, you need 1000 hours and one year as a Level 2 rope access technician. So, getting hours and hours of work even if it is low paid is what is preferable. And when you progress to the next level, your salary will also increase. As you grow, you’ll be expected to have the knowledge and ability to perform rescues and also carry out rigging.

To Level 3 and Beyond

The main responsibilities of a Level three rope access technician are team management, consulting, risk assessments and safety advisory. After Level 3, you spend very less time on the ropes. If you’re doing a permanent job as a Level 3 technician, your annual salary for a permanent job can be between $25,000 and $40,000. You will also be given benefits like paid holidays and good medical facilities as a senior employee.

Most of the L3 technicians often find contracting as lucrative and so they prefer setting up as independent self-employed consultants which means that they’re free to pursue contracts whenever they want.
In case of a refinery or factory shutting down for maintenance, they’re losing large amount of money and will pay $100s of dollars a week to someone who gets them back online quickly and safely. An L3 will oversee rope access crews on a short-term contract for huge sums of money.


For rope access technicians, the prospects remain very strong, especially in Asia, Middle East and Africa.
Industries like wind energy are generating huge demand for technicians and engineers qualified in rope access. There’s no easy way out to be a rope access technician but your hard work will definitely pay you good.