Sparrows Group, the engineering and maintenance services specialist for the global energy and industrial sectors, has received certification as an Industrial Rope Access Trade Association (IRATA) Operator and Trainer member for its facility in Kazakhstan, becoming the first training provider in the country to be approved by the industry body.
The Atyrau facility is Sparrows’ first in the country and will deliver IRATA Rope Access courses Levels 1, 2 and 3 using its specialist rope access frame, allowing candidates to undertake practical exercises and assessments in a safe environment. As well as rope access, the training centre currently provides client-specific rigging training and will be expanding the courses available to include internationally recognised banksman and slinger, mobile crane operator, and overhead crane operator training by the end of this year.
Rope access is a safe solution for working at height and in confined access areas which is frequently more effective and efficient than many mechanised systems available. With reduced times for set up, it provides quicker turnarounds and reduced costs, and rope access technicians can access areas where obstacles and design features would prohibit other options.
Stewart Mitchell, Sparrows Group Chief Executive Officer said: “This recognition from IRATA is a significant step for our Atyrau location. IRATA is the world’s leading authority on industrial rope access, and we’re pleased to become the first accredited training provider in Kazakhstan. We’re seeing an increasing demand for rope access technicians in the country and with this certification, clients can be assured that training is delivered to the highest standards.
“Ensuring the safety of people and equipment is a key part of what we do and developing strong workforce competency through training underpins that. With our centre in Kazakhstan, we can deliver training which supports safe lifting operations across industries in the region.”
Sparrows has worked in Kazakhstan since 2004, delivering NDT, crane inspection, lifting equipment inspection, and certification services, and opened the premises in Atyrau in 2021 due to growth in demand for its services in the country.
IRATA was established in the UK in the late 1980s to solve maintenance challenges in the offshore oil and gas industry. Since then, the organisation has worked for more than three decades to develop established procedures which deliver safe working at height and its methods are now used in multiple sectors including renewables, shipping and ports, power and petrochemical, and construction.