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How Our Abseil Safety Testing and Inspection Service Delighted a New Client

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Rope Access

Spectrum were fantastic!

A new client contacted us to provide abseil system inspection and testing on the roof of a cooperate office building in Fitzrovia, Central London.

The Spectrum team saved our client money thanks to our ability to both access the abseiling equipment and test it.

The Logistics 

As with all our rope access services, we scheduled a pre-site assessment to determine the project strategy. Here’s an overview:

As part of LOLER 1998 regulations, abseil rail systems require checking every six months. We issued new certificates and tags to show the system has passed official inspection and testing regulations.

In providing access and abseil system testing in one service, the client was happy to entrust us with the abseil rail system testing and inspection.

The Project

Before getting on-site, the operative would read and review the operation manual provided by the installers of the eyebolts and rails, to verify how the abseil rail system was attached and installed. The document usually includes a step-by-step safety testing procedure and can vary between specific equipment models.

Working on the weekend as part of the client’s requests, we coordinated with someone in their team to gain access at 7 am on Saturday. Both operatives signed permits and received the keys and passes necessary for roof access and other building areas.

We began on the first atrium of the roof with access to abseil rails. With a chronological approach to moving through the abseil rail system, we gained access to the priority rails that bridged access to the other rails and parts of the system.

We then began testing the equipment for physical defects. As a rule, we always ensure all testing work is in line with the operations and maintenance of the site provided by the manufacturers of the abseiling team.

We certified their safety before attaching ourselves via two independent attachment points. We continued the inspection by assessing the fixings, components, and substrate to check for any defects before tightening all the bolts with a torque wrench.

Inside the abseil rail system is a ‘traveller’ with connection points for each operative to attach and move along at will. Testing the abseil rail system required attaching a winch to the rail and hoisting 600 kg of weights from the ground level before holding it there for the standardised period. We do this to prove the equipment meets safety regulations. If any part of the abseil rail system fails, it impacts our access to the other rails. Therefore, we chose a specific order to test the rails, to ensure we could reach all the rails safely.

After successfully inspecting the abseil rail system and equipment, we tagged the equipment with a number for each rail to be identifiable. All the documents are reviewed as part of the health and safety regulations and form part of the overall compliance documentation. 

Finally, our office team provided the client with the certificates to authenticate the inspection.

The Site 

The commercial property is on Charlotte Road, Fitzrovia, in the heart of London, opposite Tottenham Court Road and the famous BT tower. The building features three beautiful glass atriums, each measuring around ten meters wide and consisting of internal lights wells from top to bottom. 

The building is self-maintained by an in-house abseiling team who needed the abseil rail system and equipment recertified.

Challenges

The first challenge was the timing. To minimise disruption, our client wanted us to conduct all work on the weekend. However, as a commercial property, there was no one around to support us with the logistics or operations of the project. This scenario required us to be incredibly organised and have all the arrangements sorted by Friday 5 pm.

The organisation between both parties proved key to the project's success as we had all the information necessary to conduct and complete the testing and inspection on time.

The client struggled to arrange a suitable time with previous contractors. But with us, there were no issues. We provided access and inspection/testing services as part of our wide range of specialist rope access solutions and met all their requirements.

The inspection and testing itself went smoothly without any part of the abseil rail system or equipment failing.

Results 

The commercial building’s abseiling rail system is now compliant with the LOLER health and safety standards for rope access. Here is a quick overview of our abseil system testing and inspection services from start to finish:

As well as reducing costs, we also increased the convenience for the client with our speedy response and the level of skill and expertise our operatives applied to bring the abseil rail system to compliance standards.

If you have a property in London that requires abseil testing or inspection, whether it’s eye bolt testing or a rail system, we can help. Contact us today for a free quote.

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Spectrum transforms buildings over the whole of the UK. Call our London based office and we will be happy to discuss your requirements and will be able to provide access to our Spectrum teams and help deliver a plan for your requirements.

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