Manikins specified in guidance from WAH experts IRATA

Working at height manikin

Written by Sarah Hampson

ALG Safety are exclusive distributors of Ruth Lee Training Manikins in Canada. Contact us on 905-517-7406
12 July 2021

Working at Height is statistically one of the most perilous workplace activities. According to an article published in OHS – Canada’s Occupational Health & Safety Magazine, statistics on workplace fatalities are rising. Many of these fatalities and injuries are a result of a fall from height and we want to highlight the importance of training when someone is working in a potentially dangerous situation.

Working at height remains an unavoidable activity in many sectors including fire departments, the police force, forestry, armed forces, construction, offshore, utilities, transport and agriculture, plus countless more. Thankfully, many employers take a very proactive approach to working at height training and there is also a growing number of dedicated specialist training companies offering courses.

If you have teams that are expected to work at height in any part of their role, you have a duty to make sure that all staff are trained to a reasonable level of competence, to minimise the risk of serious injury or death.



IRATA (International Rope Access Trade Association) is widely recognised as the world’s leading authority on industrial rope access and offers its members extensive advice on all matters of health and safety. With more than 570 member companies around the world, IRATA has accredited the training of more than 130,000 rope access technicians.

IRATA set membership requirements for anyone wishing to join. This gives companies performing industrial rope access a framework in which to define, demonstrate, and develop the management of a rope access system, and the standards specified must be demonstrated at operational and/or training site locations. This is reassuring for those using IRATA registered members to deliver training to their teams as it ensures that a high level of safety and competence will be maintained, and the skills acquired will be safe and relevant.


In 2020, after several years of developing products for the Working at Height and Rope Access sectors, Ruth Lee Ltd took the decision to join IRATA as Associate Members.

As a manufacturer of rescue training manikins, Ruth Lee Ltd are committed to helping teams to create the most realistic training by providing suitable ‘casualties’ which can be used in all manner of rope rescue training without risking a volunteer or colleague.

The Ruth Lee Working at Height manikin is used by countless rope rescue teams around the world and mentioned specifically by GWO (Global Wind Organisation) during the pandemic. It is designed to sit correctly in a rescue harness and act as an ‘unconscious casualty’ providing an accurate challenge for teams when creating strategies to rescue someone who has been injured or fallen ill whilst suspended. It was developed with assistance from experts in the rope access industry to ensure that it performs correctly in rescue training scenarios.

We are pleased that IRATA refers to the use of manikins in the IRATA membership requirements where it states:

“Manikins of at least 70kg shall be available for rescue exercises;”

The Working at Height manikin is available in a range of weights, including the specified 70kg, and this model also includes a NATO Stock number, given the rise in demand for the manikin across military organisations.


By training correctly, your organisation can help to reduce the risk to those who work at height.

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Using Manikins for Scenario Based Training in the Fire Service

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Training manikins can greatly enhance your rescue scenarios. There is less risk involved and they won’t complain if left unattended for long periods of time. You can also learn through repetition and mistake – often key to improving skills. Choosing the right size, weight and type of manikin to use is one of the keys to effective training.