OFO No: 651501

Other names for Rigger:

    • Construction Cable Layer / Puller
    • Construction Rigger
    • Forest / Logging Rigger
    • Hoisting Equipment Rigger
    • Rigger (Metal Engineering)
    • Rigger Ropesman
    • Rigger Scaffolder
    • Scaffolding Rigger
    • Ship Rigger
    • Theatrical Rigger
    • Tower Rigger
    • Winch Erector


    Youtube clip: What it’s like to be a Rigger!

    For training options in South Africa – scroll down


    What is a Rigger?

    A Rigger specialises in rope-work which allows them to reach hard-to-get-to places without using scaffolding. They are an important, skilled member of the team.


    • high buildings and bridges
    • cliffs and steep slopes
    • oil rigs and gas pipelines and structures
    • mines
    • construction sites
    • shipping and yachts

    What kind of jobs require rigging?

    • maintenance, painting and cleaning of tall buildings
    • building inspections
    • working on wind turbines
    • high rise window cleaning
    • working for signage companies erecting sign in high places
    • installing safety netting on cliffs to prevent rock falls
    • reparing aircraft
    • rescue work etc

    Riggers are responsible for the inspection, lubrication and maintenance of all types of lifting tackle, including cranes, derricks, driving winders, jacks, hoists and manually operated lifting equipment. They need to have a sound knowledge of scaffolding, platforms and tripods.

    Rigging is a very physical job. They are continually moving around, bending, climbing and working in all kinds of positions and environments. Their job can, at times, be very dangerous, but very exciting at the same time. 

    What does a Rigger do?

    • works out the weight of objects to be moved or lifted
    • secures the object safely before moving or lifting
    • inspects and maintains lifting equipment: tackle, cranes, winders, jacks, hoists etc
    • operates lifting equipment
    • learns about safe use of scaffolding, platforms and other equipment

    Are you … ?

    • fit and healthy and brave?
    • mentally stable?
    • afraid of heights?  if yes, this would not be a good job for you!
    • safety conscious?
    • willing to do heavy and physical work?
    • a team player?
    • responsible?
    • observant?

    How do I become a Rigger?

    You can choose one of these career pathways:

    PATH 1

    • Apprenticeship (training at a TVET college with practical training under a qualified artisan)
    • Trade Test

    PATH 2

    • Learnership – Chemical Rigger (Limited to 30 Ton Centre Mount Crane & 5000kg load) Level 2 and 3
    • Learnership – Chemical Rigger Level 4
    • Trade Test

    PATH 3

    • Learnership – Mechanical Handling: Rigging (Manufacturing and Engineering) Level 2, 3 and 4
    • Trade Test

    PATH 4

    •  Learnership – Rigging Ropesman – Open – Cast Level 2, 3 and 4
    • Trade Test

    PATH 5

    • Learnership – Mechanical Handling Rigging: Electrical Power Generation Level 2, 3 and 4
    • Trade Test

    PATH 6

    • Learnership – Rigging Ropesman – Surface / Underground NQF Level 2, 3 and 4
    • Trade Test

    Here are a few places that offer rigging courses:

    • RAI: Rope Access Inspection

    Offers a variety of SETA accredited programmes




    • CLICK HERE to check for a training institution near you to see what they offer.
    • Make sure you understand their entry requirements for each course.
    • To avoid scams, make sure your institution is registered with the Department of Higher Education. 
    • CLICK HERE to check accredited Private Higher Education Institutions. 


    OTHER CAREERS TO CONSIDER:  Window Cleaner … or … Stunt Person 

    Is becoming an Rigger the right career choice for me?