Some Malaysian women are defying gravity and expectations by taking on work as rope-access technicians, a job that requires them to dangle from the tops and sides of skyscrapers dotting the Kuala Lumpur landscape.
BenarNews trailed a group of five of these women as they went about a day’s work of performing risky exterior maintenance tasks on a 66-storey hotel near the iconic Petronas Towers.
Some of these women have professional degrees but left office jobs in the nation’s capital to hang from ropes outside of skyscrapers.
“It is dangerous, but I like to see the beautiful scenery from high-rise buildings,” Nurul Nadhirah Shamsul Liani, 27, who holds a bachelor’s degree in office management, told BenarNews. She said she liked this work because she had enjoyed extreme sports since school.
Nurul and her rope-handling peers belong to a career category classified as 3D – as in dirty, dangerous and difficult. Their work involves undertaking high-rise tasks such as cleaning, painting, electoral work and even plumbing.
Another technician, Aiza Faizin Mohd Rosli, 25, holds a degree in farm management. On the job for three years, she is an expert in water inspection and silicon applications for high-rise buildings.
“I feel extremely happy when I can sit and hang for almost seven hours on a high-rise. As far as the weather like raining and such, it’s normal. I am used to it,” she told Benar.
Ahmad Mujahid Abdul Hadi, owner of ANAS Consultancy & Services that employs the women, said “people always misjudge and consider 3D careers (dirty, dangerous and difficult) as nothing more than building cleaners.
“Actually, that’s not all they do. The job’s scope is vast in the field of professional maintenance,” he said.