As some of you know my dept is working on renewing/undating/improving our rope rescue capabilities. We have gotten some great SOG's! My next question is about regular training. Once your team is established, how often do you train and what does the training consist of?
Do you train once a month, quartly, etc?
Do you do whole evelutions, preplan, etc?
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05-09-2010, 11:10 PM #1
05-10-2010, 04:58 PM #2
- Join Date
- Jan 2000
- Somewhere in the Backcountry...
My team, a specialty mountain rescue team, trains every month although the mix of tech rope work may vary according to training topic.
In general, there is typically a "classroom" training which is composed of a mix of fundamental skills-based training. Usually the focus is on a specific area of skills such as litter rigging/patient packaging, raising/lowering systems, anchor problems or similar skills. Classroom training usually involves lecture style instruction and/or hands-on training on the apron or in the bay.
It is very rare for us to have a classroom session that is not followed by a field training somewhere within (but not always) our response area. Field trainings may place an emphasis on the topic(s) covered in the classroom sessions, but are usually scenario-based and require team members to put all the "pieces" of a technical rescue together. Several evolutions are usually run to allow people to rotate through areas of emphasis. This is also an opportunity to allow rescuers a chance to exercise other skills according to their role. This approach helps keep people sharp and allows for less experienced people to build competency in controlled settings.
Our field training sessions usually run for several hours (most) up to several days (a couple of times per year and usually combined with many other skills) (multiple operational periods are not common, but extened evacs happen - particularly when weather may prevent helo evacs) and may include night-time ops. This will sometimes include training in adverse weather - particularly snow.
It should be noted that probationary members work on developing a core set of basic skills before they ever participate advanced training. As a result, beyond annual refresher training, we do not spend time teaching people to tie knots or rappel. This is a unique aspect to my team and NOT something you may want to consider unless you have a mechanism to validate\maintain proficiency.
Your training needs should be tailored to your typical response(s) and balanced against other training demands. Realistic training is always preferred. For instance, always relying on a truck for an anchor doesn't help people expand anchor building skills. Leave lots of time after an evolution to allow discussion - what worked and what didn't, etc. Mix up the assignments - don't always assign rigging duties to your superstar rigger (or create a scenario where the superstar becomes "incapacitated" and someone has to step in). Change things up and keep it interesting and challenging.
I can provide more specifics if you want around topics.
05-10-2010, 07:47 PM #3
We are an urban TRT. We hold a monthly training session (second Friday of each month) which is usually 4 or 5 hours. OT for people not working that shift.
Each member has Technician level cert in rope, swiftwater, confined space and trench. Some of us have vehicle tech, collapse, wide area search and other certs but they are not our primary mission.
Each year we go to one "school" for refresher in one of the aspects. We have three training groups, made up of members from each shift so no one shift is robbed of all their techs for a week. Each training group gets a certificate refresher in each facet (rope, water, confined, trench) every four years.
Our monthly training begins with ~30 minutes of "business"; paperwork, schedules, meeting agenda stuff. Then we transition into a scenario or hands on session.
The best training is done by the individual company officers on duty. You have a free hour in the day; tie ropes, set up shoring, package patients, etc... Weekends we try to get out to a tower or parking garage and keep the rope skills up.
05-13-2010, 09:57 PM #4
- Join Date
- May 2000
- Wheaton IL
Our regional team (approx 80 members) are Tech in Rope, Confined Space, Collapse and Trench. We drill every month, usually one month is classroom, light practical and the next month is a scenario or larger practical on the same topic. We are required to attend 2 drills on each topic every year. This is only 8 drills and no where near enough. Our administrators are in a financial pinch and we really can't raise the bar. Until this year we validated the team on two areas every year (all 4 in a 2 year span).
Money is a problem so while I'd love to require more I simply can't
I think to really click we should at the minimum double our requirements. Many of the individual departments conduct additional training, but it isn't monitored by the Division team
Lt. David Dinelli
MABAS 12 TRT, Training Coordinator
06-20-2010, 02:20 PM #5
To answer your other question I like to cover skills stations one week then a scenario to hammer it home the next. Remember keep the scenarios as real as possible.
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