Accident and incident returns by IRATA

Accident and incident returns by IRATA companies for the year 2006

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Report on the incidents reported by IRATA companies for 2006This report concerns the incidents reported by members of IRATA for 2006. While particularly commenting on the incidents occurring while working on ropes, it also reviews general activities of members shown in the memberís returns including work off ropes but associated with normal IRATA activities. The report provides a detailed breakdown of the nature of the incidents and the way in which the pattern of accidents has varied over the years. Comments are made, based on these results, on those areas which require special care or control.The single most important point about this report is that it shows that the risks to safety from working from ropes is well controlled and IRATA members should be well satisfied with the figures but at the same time being determined to maintain or improve this excellent record.The nature of IRATA members work as indicated by the returns.Ninety five sets of reports were submitted for the year, six of which gave a nil return and thirteen were for only part of the year. This is an increase on previous years and indicates that IRATA continues to expand across the world.These returns show a slightly lower level of activity in carrying out rope work and a marginally greater amount of work done on rope access sites. However, these changes are probably so small that they cannot be used to suggest any real change in the level of activity by members. The number of reported incidents, particularly off ropes, is significantly larger than in 2005 while the number of the most serious accidents, again off rope, has risen significantly, largely due to one incident in which six persons were injured. The overall incident rate for all incidents while on ropes is lower than 2005 which probably reflects the continuing effectiveness of the IRATA system.Approximately 25% of the work listed in the returns was carried out by companies outside Great Britain in many parts of the world. This is discussed later in this report when reviewing table 5, but it should be noted that the returns from these companies do not have any great adverse effect on the overall IRATA figures. Quite a number of companies seem to have either a partial or complete training/assessment role although, as the returns do not specifically ask for this information, it is impossible to suggest how many are so involved.Another feature which will be discussed in more detail later when reviewing table 2.a, is that work off ropes accounts for some 43% of the workload. It is probable that this percentage is probably even higher as the returns suggest that the recording of these hours is not undertaken as diligently as recording hours worked on ropes. The significance of this for IRATA is that such work is outside the IRATA system and the variability of such other related work probably accounts for the higher incident rate already noted above. However, this rate is not particularly high when compared with the national average for work related injuries and probably reflects that the discipline required for rope access work is applied in these other areas so that there is more control over work related risks. -----------The remainder of this report is in PDF format and can be downloaded from

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