The first pilot assessment of the new National Event Lifting Certificate has taken place at Unusual Rigging’s headquarters in Bugbrooke, Northampton.
The certification has been designed by the The National Rigging Advisory Group (NRAG), with contributions from NRAG members including Harry Box from UK Rigging, Mark Armstrong from RTM Rigging, Paul Riddiford, PLASA’s NRC Manager and Unusual Rigging’s Robin Elias.
It is being offered to those working in the entertainment industry – in lighting, sound, video and scenery – who are often called upon to undertake rigging work, and to carry out lifting operations, without possessing the relevant qualification.
Elias explained: “The one-day assessment consists of practical exercises in marking out, a practical assessment of a rigging related task leading up to and including carrying out a lifting operation, an hour long exam and one to one verbal sessions.
“Currently there is a grey area in our industry, especially on touring shows, where all too often you have lighting, AV or set guys carrying out rigging tasks – and often supervising lifts, with no proof of competence.”
The assessment follows the same syllabus as the current National Rigging Certificate Level 2 qualification, minus the working at height module and will be delivered at the two NRC Assessment Centres at Unusual & UK Rigging.
Like the NRC the National Event Lifting Certificate is not a training course but an assessment of existing competence which should only be taken by people with previous training and experience. The next NELC Assessment is scheduled for early February in Bolton at UK Rigging.
He added: “With this qualification, individuals and companies will have the opportunity to conform with LOLER, enabling employees to demonstrate their competence, fulfilling their obligations under CDM.”
Riddiford commented: “It is hoped that this qualification becomes the benchmark for the industry, headed by those rigging companies and venues that already endorse and support the NRC and Trainee Rigger Scheme.
“Unusual Rigging has been heavily involved with the NRC since its inception and have continued to support and promote both the qualification and its associated schemes over the last eight years.”
He concluded: “Unusual’s new recently completed purpose built assessment and classroom facility are an asset to the NRC and NELC.”