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Becoming an API Qualified Rigger

[Internal note] Following is a passage repeated from the article submitted 4/2/2012 entitled Becoming a Rigger: “The American Petroleum Institute (API) publishes a recommended practice that includes a formalized training program to become an API qualified Rigger for certain offshore platforms and drilling rigs. A future article will cover this topic in greater detail.”

The American Petroleum Institute (API) publishes many recommended practices (RPs). Recommended Practice 2D is entitled Recommended Practice for Operation and Maintenance of Offshore Cranes. It contains sections covering the recommended minimum training and refresher training for API quali- fied Riggers.

This article is only a brief summary of the highlights of the recommended practice. Complete copies of API RP 2D are available for purchase from any number of online sources, or directly from API at:

While only a recommended practice, API RP 2D is the mandated training program for both the federal Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement [at 30 CFR 250.108(a) and (e)(3)] and the United States Coast Guard (USCG) for personnel involved in offshore crane load rigging and handling loads. There is no reason why the training outlined in API RP 2D could not also pertain to transportation company personnel and onshore Riggers.

What Is An API Qualified Rigger? 
The American Petroleum Institute defines a Rigger as anyone who attaches or detaches lifting equip- ment to loads or lifting devices. It emphasizes that accidents and injuries can occur as a result of rig- ging errors and therefore proper Rigger training is an important part of overall crane safety.

An API qualified Rigger is a person who has successfully completed a training program that complies with Appendix A3 of API RP 2D and whose minimum training program requirements comply with those outlined in the recommended practice. Qualified Riggers must periodically successfully com- plete refresher training to retain the classification.

What Does The Recommended Practice Require? 
According to API, rigger training must be conducted in a classroom setting. It must include hands-on applications and must incorporate an examination that accurately assesses the student's acquired knowledge. The hands-on portion of the training should include instruction in the proper inspection, use, and maintenance of rigging equipment such as slings, shackles, hooks, and so forth.

Appendix A3 is a commentary that enumerates a training program outline. It is subdivided into:

How Often is Re-training Required? 
In order to remain qualified, it is the responsibility of the employer to ensure that Riggers receive ap- propriate refresher training at a minimum of every four years. Any type of sufficient disabling medical condition is cause for the Rigger to be disqualified.

Where Can Qualified Rigger Training Be Obtained? 
At their website the Crane Inspection and Certification Bureau, a private concern, states that they met the stringent requirements of the American Petroleum Institute (API) and that they are established as an API Certified Training Provider to train, evaluate and qualify Riggers. According to CICB, by complet- ing their program and successfully passing the written and practical exams, candidates are issued a Qualified and Competent API RP-2D Rigger Certificate. Go to:

for more information. There are numerous other training organizations and companies that offer API RP 2D training. Just use your favorite web browser's search engine.