IRATA response to Petzl statement

Statement to field personnel in light of IRATA response to Petzl statement regarding the use of the shunt as a back-up device in Industrial rope access.

Statement to field personnel in light of IRATA response to Petzl statement regarding the use of the shunt as a back-up device in Industrial rope access.

We, Stork, have read and understood IRATA’s response  to Petzl’s statement  on the use of the Petzl shunt as a backup device for industrial rope access, which was issued on of 10 January 2012.


The acknowledged concern is: “the shunt should not be used as a back-up device if it is to be continuously towed in descent”.


We are currently reviewing all available alternative back-up devices that comply with standard EN 12841 (Personal fall protection equipment – Rope access systems – Rope adjustment devices) Type A – Back-up devices, and in accordance with the IRATA International Code of Practice Section 2.7.7.  We will evaluate the functionality of each device to establish suitability within foreseeable rope access working conditions and situations in accordance with our mitigation plan going forward.


In the interim, we have reviewed our current risk assessment to mitigate the risk and to allow this equipment to be safely used at present, it will be used alternately from the descender to eliminate the continuously towed in descent technique.


The acceptable technique will involve descending until the shunt is at a position where the operator can not descend further without being “hung up on the shunt”. The command rope is to be kept in hand, and the hand operating the descender will then tow down the shunt to a position level with the top of the descender - whereby the process will then be repeated until the descent is complete.


Further discussion will be undertaken with IRATA to clarify the situation, and updates will be supplied as and when they become available.
 

This approach was agreed by a group of IRATA operators and trainers who conduct their business within the oil and gas sector.

Should you require any further information or additional training, please contact us as soon as possible. Click here to read the risk assessment, which is also available  on the REACH Beyond Zero website www.storktechnicalservices.com/reach).


Once read, please record on a Toolbox Talk and return to the Special Access Systems department.

Many thanks


David Gerrie
Operations Manager, Stork

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