Tools of the Trade: Megarmeby CW Guest Columnist on Jan 19, 2013
Daniel Gill, head of business development, displays the most important kit a rope access specialist needs to have to scale the skies
Megarme LLC, established in the UAE in 1993, is a professional Inspection, Repair and Maintenance (IRM) provider that delivers turn-key services that can be deployed individually or as part of a multidisciplinary solution. As an IRATA (Industrial Rope Access Trade Association) full operating and training member, Megarme offers highly skilled and fully certified work-at -height technicians.
The nature of our services reduces project execution periods and lowers downtime, minimising the impact on ongoing operations, ultimately reducing the cost to our clients in comparison to traditional methods. Our people are our strength — with a fully certified workforce of nearly 450 employees, Megarme is the largest rope access contractor in the Middle East.
Right people need the right equipment. Each piece of the kit contributes to the successful completion of projects.
Whether we are abseiling ‘down’ the Burj Khalifa or climbing ‘up’ an oil platform leg, the choice of tools and the configuration in which they are used is where true expertise comes into play. Simplicity is key when it comes to work-at-height. Each item is designed to carry out a specific maneuver and stringent procedures surrounding work-at-height do not allow deviation.
The shunt is the most important component as it forms the backup safety device. Should any component fail, the shunt will engage on the safety rope and arrest a fall.
When the chest croll is used in conjunction with the hand jumar it allows technicians to ascend by locking onto the rope when downward force is applied. The hand jumar gives technicians a firm attachment point on the rope to attach a foot loop, as well as having a hand grip.
The rig is a descending device which allows rope to pass through in a controlled manner giving the technician the ability to descend slowly and safely — this is the most common maneuver.
A cows tail is a short length of dynamic rope attached to the harness and is used to attach various pieces of climbing equipment. Called aid climbing, it can be used to position or even fully support the technician should they need to climb away from their ropes.
A specially designed helmet is also used to offer the technician the most protection from falling objects whilst not obstructing their view. It has a chin strap to keep it in place and mounts for head-mountable equipment such as work lights and cameras.
Ropes are rigged from solid anchor points above the work area, and the climbing equipment is attached in various manners to perform different maneuvers.
Even with the right people and the right equipment, it is paramount that adequate training be provided.
Megarme’s IRATA training centre offers comprehensive training for new IRATA technicians as well as upgrades and refresher courses. We believe in our people, and we believe they can do great things. It is our aim to provide them with the right tools to create a healthy and safe work environment.