Out now: International Code of Practice for Entertainment Rigging

International Code of Practice for Entertainment Rigging (ICOPER)
Where border crossing activities in other industries, like transport are pretty much regulated all across the globe, this is quite different for Entertainment Rigging. This might be due to the fact that our industry is quite young, is of less political interest or has experienced lesser accidents. In general, governments have shown limited interest in the development and implementation of regulations for our industry. The Entertainment Rigging regulations that first came to life in the 1970’s and 1980’s where on a national basis, often using already existing, industrial use based, lifting regulations. Such as harbour and construction cranes, the mining industry or elevators, or even, in some instances, the (Sailing) Ship Lifting regulations,

Regulations with international acceptance are non-existent in the entertainment rigging branch. Regulation -if at all- came mostly into being without consulting the technical people in the sector. With the growth of the entertainment industry as a whole, becoming a factor of importance, representing larger financial and economic interests, questions of responsibility and liability became apparent. In response to some unfortunate accidents, the who, what, where, why and when, as part of the complex and often time-squeezed production building process, became a more urgent factor of interest.

Rigging Production Planning & Process Guide
During the PLASA International Rigging Conference in London, some 6 years ago, voices were raised for the first time that implementing some sort of ‘International Code of Rigging Practice’ definitely was worthwhile to undertake. The initiative was adopted and participants, willing to cooperate in this global scale project, were found.

Over 40 rigging technicians, working in 3 separate working groups in North America, Europe and Austral-Asia set out to undertake this enormous project. Each working group covered a number of topics, reviewed by the other groups, guaranteeing a good feedback workflow.

Last October, the final ICOPER document was published. An achievement our industry can be really proud of, since it will promote awareness and safety worldwide. The ICOPER document provides a model code of practice with a focus on arena rigging. However, this Code of Practice is applicable to all event production rigging disciplines.

The document provides guidance and a universal foundation for those engaged in planning, managing and executing entertainment rigging.

Key areas covered in ICOPER include:
• Pre-Installation
• Planning and Engineering
• Drawing Conventions
• Equipment Selection
• Onsite Rigging Work
• Lifting Operations
• Show Rigging Operations
• De-Rigging Work
• Post Production

The ICOPER will help promote regulatory harmony and reduce potential conflicts between regions around the world. It will support improvements in communications and relations with regional and local regulators which will be particularly beneficial to those professionals involved in international production. Further it might act as a basis for future developments and will help regulators, manufacturers, insurers, inspectors and users alike.

This document is a MUST read for each technician involved in Rigging in this industry.

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Jon Reeves JDR Rigging, Finland