Inspection Time: New Rigging Standard Helps Ensure Safety & Reduce Liability

by Michael Eddy
Is it time to inspect your rigging system?
Is it time to inspect your rigging system?

The Recommended Guidelines for Entertainment Rigging System Inspections was recently published by ESTA, the Entertainment Services and Technology Association, which is accredited by ANSI, the American National Standards Institute. ANSI requires a thorough, fair and balanced standard-development process. The new rigging inspection standard was authored by the Rigging Working Group (RWG) within ESTA’s Technical Standards Program. The RWG consists of a cross-section of entertainment industry professionals representing diverse interests and developing consensus-based standards and recommended practices.

According to the standard, rigging inspections are recommended as a component of theatrical workplace safety programs. But until now there were no industry-accepted guidelines for inspection frequency, inspector qualifications, inspection procedures, and inspection report content. The lack of industry-accepted guidelines was true for all inspections—either owner-conducted or third-party.

Spreading the Word, Reducing the Risk
This new standard will be useful to a wide range of personnel in the performing arts: rigging system owners, rigging system inspectors, stagehands, performers, insurance companies, and occupational health and safety authorities. The standard offers guidance on inspecting entertainment rigging systems used to lift and support scenery, luminaires, and other equipment overhead in entertainment venues, including theatres, video/film studios, amphitheaters, and arenas used for live performances or special events.

J.R. Clancy and Wenger are helping spread the word, encouraging any venue with rigging to promote greater safety and reduce their liability risk by adopting this new ESTA/ANSI standard. Click here to download a free copy of this standard for your facility’s management and ownership (look for ANSI E1.47 – 2017).

How can you help ensure the safety of your staff, performers, and audience? Start by answering this question:
When was your facility’s rigging system last inspected?

  • Don’t know the answer? It’s time.
  • Was it more than a year ago? It’s time.
  • Was the rigging recently altered or repaired? It’s time.

For the first time ever, this advice—for both manual and automated rigging systems—is now a recommended and accredited industry standard. Facilities across the U.S. are now taking steps to ensure their compliance. Your facility should be next.

Leveraging Their Legacy, Helping Your Facility
John R. Clancy, an enterprising, ingenious and safety-conscious stagehand, founded J.R. Clancy in 1885—more than 130 years ago. Their proprietary safety program is dedicated to keeping your new or existing facility safe and at top operating performance.

All of J.R Clancy rigging inspectors are certified through ESTA’s Entertainment Technician Certification Program (ETCP), in compliance with the latest industry practices and standards. By ensuring that safety is a priority at your facility, they can help protect your performers, staff, and audience while extending the life of your theatrical equipment.

Further information from J.R. Clancy and Wenger:
You can schedule a J.R. Clancy inspection by using this online form or contact them via e-mail at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..