1. #1
    Moderator
    ProgressiveRescue's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    228

    Arrow Vertical Confined Space Rigging

    I would love your 0.02 cents on this topic. When rigging for a vertical confined space operation utilizing a tripod as your overhead, where is the placement of your belay lines?
    I throw this question out a lot during classes I teach and seem to get a 50/50 split regarding the placement and rigging method.

    What are your thoughts....
    Mike Donahue
    "Training Prepares You...For Moments That Define You

  2. #2
    Forum Member
    DeputyMarshal's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Connecticut, USA
    Posts
    2,638

    Default

    Next to the main lift block such that the belay line runs as nearly parallel to the main line as practical. A bear paw on the tripod works nicely as an anchor for both.
    "Nemo Plus Voluptatis Quam Nos Habant"

    The Code is more what you'd call "guidelines" than actual rules.

  3. #3
    Moderator
    ProgressiveRescue's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    228

    Arrow Vertical Rigging

    I'm a big fan of redundancy in systems... sometimes i'm a little over the top in that respect but I guess thats not a bad thing.
    I only utilize the tripod for my lowering/raising line (main line) the belay lines get attached to separate anchor points outside of the tripod. I do this simply as a worse case scenario preventative measure. If the tripod should be knocked over, the connection point that the rigging plate is connected to fails (very rare ) you wont lose your entire operation. If either of those scenarios should happen you can quickly piggyback a MAS onto any of the belay systems and retrieve the victim and or rescuers.
    You may be thinking... to rig all those separate belay attachments will eat up some time. I've had two groups of experienced students go head to head one rigging entirely off of a tripod the other rigging as I explained and it took about the same amount of time.
    There are dozens of different ways to rig of course but a few years ago I came across this method which went against how I was taught but made complete sense and thought it was worth passing on.
    Mike Donahue
    "Training Prepares You...For Moments That Define You

  4. #4
    Forum Member
    DeputyMarshal's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Connecticut, USA
    Posts
    2,638

    Default

    If you have the luxury of excess equipment, surplus personnel, and wide open spaces to set up your operation, totally independent redundant redundancy is a nice option. IMHO, that's not a combination that occurs often.

    Hell, I don't know of too many vertical confined space settings where your whole forum handle would fit -- never mind enough space to double up on tripods or other suitable anchor hardpoints.
    "Nemo Plus Voluptatis Quam Nos Habant"

    The Code is more what you'd call "guidelines" than actual rules.

  5. #5
    Moderator
    ProgressiveRescue's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    228

    Lightbulb Confined Space Rigging Operation

    Valid point DM. Manpower can be an issue however if you have a solid crew with a good eye one rescuer can create multiple anchor points very quickly...we just need one bombproof anchor.You mentioned doubling up on your tripod, I think I was misunderstood. The belay anchors would be structural elements near the entry point. Space was never really an issue, we were always able to make it work,although it has been tight at times. Organization then becomes a key piece to the success of your operation. If your dealing with pseudo anchors... that's a whole new ballgame. It's time to adapt and make things happen.
    Your standard cache of rope equipment should do the trick however I know some departments (mine) are blessed with a pretty solid cache and some are less fortunate. If that's the case... you do what you're trained to do...make it work and execute the operation safely, effectively, and efficiently. (S.E.E)
    Mike Donahue
    "Training Prepares You...For Moments That Define You

  6. #6
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    N. Ridgeville, Ohio
    Posts
    811

    Default

    We run our belays on the ground over the edge of the opening. A Born Entry Ease makes a great edge protection for this purpose. The only thing that we normally put in the tripod is the 4:1 that we use for the haul/lower system.
    Jason Brooks
    IAFF Local 2388
    IACOJ

  7. #7
    Moderator
    ProgressiveRescue's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    228

    Arrow Confined Space Rigging Operation

    Great to hear Jason. Were you originally trained like that or is that something you learned later on in your career?
    Mike Donahue
    "Training Prepares You...For Moments That Define You

  8. #8
    MembersZone Subscriber
    jfTL41's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    NY
    Posts
    573

    Default

    we go over the edge with the safety, and the four to one off an anchor and the main rather than on the tri pod.

  9. #9
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    235

    Default

    There is a newer school of thought, one with which I agree, that the belay line should be run through the high directional (HD) such as a tripod during the edge transition and lowered to ground level during the operation.

    This can be done by running your belay through a collapsed mini MA such as an AZTEK during the loading of the main line and be lowered by the edge attendant as the load is lowered into the space.

    If the main line fails during the edge transition, the load will not fall because it is suspended by the belay up high. If the belay is not rigged high during the transition and a mainline failure occurs, the load is going to fall a significant distance because the belay is several feet off of the deck to wherever the attachment point to the load is.

    If the HD fails during the edge transition, then the load is only going to fall the distance it would have were it not rigged through the HD.

    You can see in the attached picture that the load has cleared the edge and the belay is now run low though an extended AZTEK. This has the added benefit of being able to collapse the AZTEK and raise the load to the height of the HD should you need to haul back up on the belay because of a mainline failure.Also, while the picture was taken in the woods, the concepts obviously apply to a C space incident as well.

    Lets also keep in mind that failures during edge transition are usually caused by human error in rigging and not catastrophic equipment failure.
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  10. #10
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    eastern WA
    Posts
    93

    Default nice!

    Seems like a very effective way to mitigate main line edge transition mistakes on both the lower and raise.

  11. #11
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    N. Ridgeville, Ohio
    Posts
    811

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ProgressiveRescue Specialized Rescue Forum Moderator View Post
    Great to hear Jason. Were you originally trained like that or is that something you learned later on in your career?
    Mike Donahue
    We have been doing it this way for years.
    Jason Brooks
    IAFF Local 2388
    IACOJ

  12. #12
    Forum Member
    FiremanLyman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    948

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by DeputyMarshal View Post
    Hell, I don't know of too many vertical confined space settings where your whole forum handle would fit ...
    Zing! Ha.

    Quote Originally Posted by ProgressiveRescue Specialized Rescue Forum Moderator View Post
    I'm a big fan of redundancy in systems... sometimes i'm a little over the top in that respect but I guess thats not a bad thing.
    I only utilize the tripod for my lowering/raising line (main line) the belay lines get attached to separate anchor points outside of the tripod. I do this simply as a worse case scenario preventative measure. If the tripod should be knocked over, the connection point that the rigging plate is connected to fails (very rare ) you wont lose your entire operation.
    Anytime you are using high help, I like to have the safety or belay line on a lower surface. In confined space, a lot like trench, the rope becomes more of a tag line to find your people and maybe yank them out if disaster occurs.

    Some thoughts with the tag line. Where are you hooking it up? I say if you have to go vertical on a lower then it needs to be on the dorsal. This way if rescuer goes unconscious then he can be raised without rag dolling over and getting stuck on the access point.

    What if you are going in all horizontal? Where then? Dorsal would work if you could turn them around inside the space. But what if the space is a narrow tube? You then have to send a back up team member to go put a California Love Knot on the downed rescuers ankles and drag him out. Could definitely be done with his tag line no matter where he attached it. Thoughts?
    ~Drew
    Firefighter/EMT/Technical Rescue
    USAR TF Rescue Specialist

  13. #13
    Moderator
    ProgressiveRescue's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    228

    Default Confined Space Rigging Operation

    DCFDRescue2
    Great Idea! That's outside the box thinking.
    Mike Donahue
    "Training Prepares You...For Moments That Define You

  14. #14
    Forum Member
    DeputyMarshal's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Connecticut, USA
    Posts
    2,638

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FiremanLyman View Post
    Zing! Ha.
    Don't laugh. He didn't find it amusing despite the generous use of emoticons. I got a nastygram and a criticims of my sense of humor from him for it. With such a thin skin he must be a joy around the firehouse.

    Anytime you are using high help, I like to have the safety or belay line on a lower surface. In confined space, a lot like trench, the rope becomes more of a tag line to find your people and maybe yank them out if disaster occurs.
    In a trench situation, I don't disagree. I was thinking more of a true vertical that might involve a small opening with a sharp edge transition (i.e. hatch, trap door, etc.) In that instance, I prefer to have both lines near center above the hole so that either can lift someone clear if necessary without dragging them over the edge.

    Given the degree of safety margin in typical tripods and rigging hardware, I worry far more about a primary line getting fouled than I do about a catastrophic hardware failure. I like having the belay line rigged so that it can easily be used as a lift line -- not just a fall arrest.
    "Nemo Plus Voluptatis Quam Nos Habant"

    The Code is more what you'd call "guidelines" than actual rules.

  15. #15
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    N. Ridgeville, Ohio
    Posts
    811

    Default

    [QUOTE=FiremanLyman;1205091]Some thoughts with the tag line. Where are you hooking it up? I say if you have to go vertical on a lower then it needs to be on the dorsal. This way if rescuer goes unconscious then he can be raised without rag dolling over and getting stuck on the access point.
    QUOTE]


    I hear where you are coming from on this. However, think about this scenario for a second. You are lowered with a front attachment point and your body is centered in the hole based on that system. Now, the system fails and your rear attachment belay will recenter your weight in the hole. This could end with your face smashed into the wall. If you use a front attachment point, you will stay oriented in the same plane. Another issue we ran across with a rear attachment was a squeeze. The systems locked up and the guy on the rope got squeezed between his haul/lower and belay lines. Not something we want to do again.
    Jason Brooks
    IAFF Local 2388
    IACOJ

  16. #16
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    235

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ProgressiveRescue View Post
    DCFDRescue2
    Great Idea! That's outside the box thinking.
    Mike Donahue
    I'll take credit for the picture and setting up of the Vortex in the pic, but the concept of this belay line operation I learned in a class.

    It does work out well though.

  17. #17
    Forum Member
    GTRider245's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Augusta,GA
    Posts
    3,059

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by DCFDRescue2 View Post
    There is a newer school of thought, one with which I agree, that the belay line should be run through the high directional (HD) such as a tripod during the edge transition and lowered to ground level during the operation.

    This can be done by running your belay through a collapsed mini MA such as an AZTEK during the loading of the main line and be lowered by the edge attendant as the load is lowered into the space.

    If the main line fails during the edge transition, the load will not fall because it is suspended by the belay up high. If the belay is not rigged high during the transition and a mainline failure occurs, the load is going to fall a significant distance because the belay is several feet off of the deck to wherever the attachment point to the load is.

    If the HD fails during the edge transition, then the load is only going to fall the distance it would have were it not rigged through the HD.

    You can see in the attached picture that the load has cleared the edge and the belay is now run low though an extended AZTEK. This has the added benefit of being able to collapse the AZTEK and raise the load to the height of the HD should you need to haul back up on the belay because of a mainline failure.Also, while the picture was taken in the woods, the concepts obviously apply to a C space incident as well.

    Lets also keep in mind that failures during edge transition are usually caused by human error in rigging and not catastrophic equipment failure.
    Now THAT is slick. Yet another awesome use for the mini haul systems.
    Career Firefighter
    Volunteer Captain

    -Professional in Either Role-

    Quote Originally Posted by Rescue101 View Post
    I don't mind fire rolling over my head. I just don't like it rolling UNDER my a**.

  18. #18
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    64

    Default

    We run ours on the ground into the hole. I do not like attaching the belay to the tripod.
    DCFDRescue2 has some good points though...I would like to know what a 3 to 4 foot drop and catch would do to a tripod if we had a 2 person load.

  19. #19
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    235

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FIRECAPT62 View Post
    We run ours on the ground into the hole. I do not like attaching the belay to the tripod.
    DCFDRescue2 has some good points though...I would like to know what a 3 to 4 foot drop and catch would do to a tripod if we had a 2 person load.
    If done properly, you wouldn't have a 3-4 foot fall on the high directional.

    The only way that would happen, regardless of whether the belay was rigged high, low, through an AZTEK, etc... is if the belay was not being tended to properly and had 3-4 feet of slack in the system. Not to say the load can't move 3-4 feet in a belay activation because of rope stretch, but a two tension rope system is probably the subject of another thread.

  20. #20
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    105

    Default

    If you’re using tandem prussic belays and if you have a sudden main line failure you will almost always have at least a 3 to 4 foot drop before the belay will catch. (This is in normal operations when the team is not suspecting a failure.) We have done drop tests to prove that point…we used a 300# and a 600# weighted systems.

    Anyway I think that there is some good discussion going on here. I like to run the belay on the ground and not attach to the tripod. There is no doubt that the transition through the hole is a problem and I will agree that a high point belay is best but I am not sure that I want to risk attaching it to the tripod.

    Remember…The life we save may be yours.
    MEDIC-0372

  21. #21
    Forum Member
    FiremanLyman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    948

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MEDIC0372 View Post
    If you’re using tandem prussic belays and if you have a sudden main line failure you will almost always have at least a 3 to 4 foot drop before the belay will catch. (This is in normal operations when the team is not suspecting a failure.) We have done drop tests to prove that point…we used a 300# and a 600# weighted systems.
    This is why I like to use dual munter's for a two rope tension system. Truly have both lines loaded and equal weight distribution, little to no movement if something catastrophic happens. We too have loaded over 500 lbs on a dual munter and catch it with no movement. You can do this with confined space, as long as you have a MA piggyback system ready to reverse into a haul, this can be done with a Gibbs on the main line hooked to the MA. Edge attendant can mind the Gibbs open while lowering, let go of it if you need to come back up.

    I personally don't like two tension lines for confined space, but we have done it.
    ~Drew
    Firefighter/EMT/Technical Rescue
    USAR TF Rescue Specialist

  22. #22
    Moderator
    ProgressiveRescue's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    228

    Arrow

    From the beginning of my rope training I was taught the belay system should be a "hands free" system or in other words activate on it's own in the event the belayer was not doing their job. I've played with the munter hitch before and honestly the fact that you have to for the most part manually activate that system makes me question it's use in a life safety application. I'd love to hear some more thoughts and or experiences with munter belay systems. This seems to always be the great debate amoungst us rope guys.
    Great Postings!
    Mike Donahue
    "Training Prepares You...For Moments That Define You

  23. #23
    Forum Member
    GTRider245's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Augusta,GA
    Posts
    3,059

    Default

    In my personal opinion, it will depend a lot on my belayer. I don't need to be as comfortable with a certain belay system as the man running it does.
    Career Firefighter
    Volunteer Captain

    -Professional in Either Role-

    Quote Originally Posted by Rescue101 View Post
    I don't mind fire rolling over my head. I just don't like it rolling UNDER my a**.

  24. #24
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Kansas
    Posts
    59

    Default

    Thanks for the topic. I'm glad to see people thinking about this issue. I don't think enough discussion is given to the dynamic situation created when rigging with a high point. During an edge transition you have two issues working against you: very little rope in the system and a 3' to 4' of rope slack in the belay. I believe the temp belay as pictured above addresses this issue. The most dangerous time for a rescue/training with a high point is during edge transition. I've seen guys death grip the tripod legs and strike them with the stokes while threading the a-frame. Even with the proper tiebacks you can still bump a leg over the side if you try hard enough.

  25. #25
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    eastern WA
    Posts
    93

    Default

    The munter hitch doesn't pass the whistle test.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. Confined Space & Wild Land PPE
    By BHFF22 in forum Specialized Rescue
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 12-07-2004, 09:18 AM
  2. Book- CONFINED SPACE ENTRY & EMERGENCY RESPONSE
    By lutan1 in forum Specialized Rescue
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 07-17-2004, 06:24 AM
  3. Confined Space Rescue--Jacksonville Florida
    By captstanm1 in forum Fire Wire
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 09-01-2002, 09:17 AM
  4. Confined Space Rescue
    By JAPFPE in forum Specialized Rescue
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 02-29-2000, 08:43 AM
  5. Industrial Confined Space Rescue
    By TJHELMS in forum Specialized Rescue
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 01-13-2000, 04:59 PM

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts

Log in

Click here to log in or register