The Police Service of Northern Ireland – Information and Communication Services has a requirement to receive tower safety climbing and rope access training from a Specialised Climbing Training Provider, for ICS staff who are engaged in working at heights on communications tower structures of various sizes and types.
There are in the region of 30 members of ICS staff who are required to work on radio towers. Approximately 6 of these are line managers of the departments who climb and can therefore be classed as supervisors, although they do not attend every climbing event.
Where new climbers are required, supervisors are responsible to conduct Aptitude Training, where the chosen staff will be equipped with safety equipment, given a brief overview of the equipment and safety practices and then taken to climb an appropriate tower. This is to determine and ensure that they are comfortable with heights before formal training is organised.
The ICS Climbing Procedures indicate a reliance on training received from the Tenderer to ensure the safety of ICS staff working at heights. As such staff are required to comply with advice & guidelines given at formal training. Any agreed changes in climbing and hauling techniques identified at formal training events will subsequently be reflected in revisions to the Climbing Procedures document.