The Big 5 Special

Potter ... meeting demand.

Potter ... meeting demand.

Work made safe and easy

November 2016

At Rapid Access’s stand at The Big 5 show, visitors will be able to witness first-hand the ease and safety of using aerial work platforms in their daily operations.

Part of the UK-based Lavendon Group, the company is the Middle East’s leading provider of powered access equipment and services. It is primarily a rental company offering all types of powered access equipment manufactured by the world’s leading suppliers.

“We have been participating in The Big 5 for the last two years, and we recognise the event as the region’s largest and most successful exhibition for the construction industry,” says Alexis Potter, sales and marketing director, Middle East and International.

He says visitors to the stand will see some of the equipment the company provides as well as meet its specialist staff, who can help customers understand the safest way for their operatives to carry out tasks involving working at height.

“In addition, we will also run the popular ‘Selfies at Height’ feature from our stand where visitors are taken above the exhibition centre in one of the machines and get the opportunity to take a selfie with the Dubai skyline in the background,” he adds.

Powered access equipment at the company’s Dubai office.

Powered access equipment at the company’s Dubai office.

Rapid Access offers equipment for sale and long lease and is a leading provider of powered access training across the region with a suite of courses including ones from the IPAF (the International Powered Access Federation), Health & Safety and Pasma (Prefabricated Access Suppliers’ and Manufacturers’ Association).

Potter says powered access equipment is increasingly being recognised as the safest and most efficient method of working at height in a range of industries including construction, facilities management, and media and events sector.

Commenting on the exhibition, he says: “The Big 5 is the largest event in the region and stands up to comparison with some of the largest construction-related events around the globe. The range of international visitors at The Big 5 provides us with a unique opportunity to network with people across the region, thank our clients and also allows us to meet new and interesting people from other parts of the globe.”

“The event is a great opportunity to meet people from across the region and learn about the development of the working-at-height industry in new countries,” he adds.

He says the company’s main aim, however, is to show people how easy and safe it is to use aerial work platforms in their daily operations. In addition, the ‘Selfies at Height’ feature is an opportunity to give people an experience of the company’s equipment and a memento of the show. 

Rapid Access machinery ... at a previous Big 5 show.

Rapid Access machinery ... at a previous Big 5 show.

“Working at height is a high-risk activity and unfortunately falls from height are still the most common form of workplace accidents around the world. By using aerial work platforms with the appropriate training, you can reduce risk for your operatives and substantially improve efficiency of operations,” says Potter.

At The Big 5, in addition to its core fleet, Rapid Access will also be displaying its safe and innovative BlueSky Solutions – a range of accessories and material handling attachments that are designed to aid productivity and reduce risk for those working at height. A free demo will be conducted throughout the event for customers who are interested.

Furthermore, the company’s regional safety and training manager Mike Palmer, a leading industry expert, will also be conducting a free-to-attend seminar during the event to educate people from various fields on how to deliver improved safety and results whilst working at height. 

Commenting on business, Potter says; “Business this year has been good with our fleet size having grown by over 25 per cent in the last 12 months and utilisation levels remaining high. The economic environment has been affected by the current climate of low oil prices but the regional growth drivers for construction and infrastructure across the region remain strong. Our growth this year has primary been driven by Qatar, Kuwait and the UAE, with this growth offsetting some declines experienced in our Saudi operations.”

Rapid Access is currently expanding its depot network to support key projects and clients to ensure it continues to provide an exceptional level of service.

Rapid Access ... in use at an airport project in Saudi Arabia.

Rapid Access ... in use at an airport project in Saudi Arabia.

“Given the geographical scale of some GCC countries – Saudi Arabia, for example, is almost nine times the land area of the UK – the distance between cities and key projects is substantial. It is only by investing in new depots that we can ensure that both equipment and service solutions are available when the client needs them,” says Potter.

He says the powered access sector across the region is a growing industry and, therefore, the company’s primary focus is on maximising opportunities to work with GCC clients to deliver safe and efficient working-at-height solutions.

“We are constantly assessing opportunities to expand Rapid’s footprint into new territories,” he says, adding that the company is working on major infrastructure and construction projects across the region.

Rapid Access, the Middle East business of the Lavendon Group, was established in 1996, with its head office in Dubai. It now has nine depots located across the GCC in Dubai, Abu Dhabi in the UAE, Oman, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait, and Jeddah, Riyadh and Dammam in Saudi Arabia. It is all present across Western Europe.

Rapid Access is at Stand OS B41.

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