1. #1
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    rescuedylan's Avatar
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    Dec 2010
    Bucks County, PA

    Default Industrial rope access rescues

    Was wondering how many out there are looking into or are currently training for rescue of industrial access workers? Such as workers that dont have a direct means of travel to access them, so aid climbing will have to be done. I do know that these workers have someone with them to do the rescue if need be during work, but we all know that will not always happen.

  2. #2
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    Join Date
    Feb 2006


    SPRAT has a very good safety record and are very serious about training to rescue a stranded partner. But I think that if you are in the business of rope rescue it is a good idea to understand how to deal with these issues. However, in this new economy, adding SPRAT level training to your list might prove to be a tough sell in most FDs. The cost to train and cert one individual can run as high as $2-3Gs which includes OT, travel and hotel for a 5 day course. Then you would enter into an 8 hour re-cert each year. You could seek out instruction from a qualified person without the SPRAT testing. RTR/Sedona and PMI/Denver offer SPRAT with or without testing. Rope Works in Reno is also an excellent choice and is taught by some of the best in the field.

    But to get back to your question, most FDs have a few guys who are climbers or have a special interest in the access field. They would be a good resource to get started in training for the access side of things. You will find that most SPRAT guys are climbers on the side and do rope access during the off season to fund their outdoor addictions. Most of the movements in access are very basic and familiar to most rope rescue teams. The biggest difference would be their equipment, exposure and small team organization.

    I've had training in these areas and use them on the private side in the wind energy field. I also have a SPRAT cert guy at my firehouse. We've trained our department's rescue team in some of the more basic access movements and related rescue issues. Most of our team members have enjoyed access training and find it to be both interesting and challenging. You mention aid climbing or possible horizontal movement which might require re-belays and rope transfers. I would consider these topics to be outside the norm for most FDs. This would require a few pieces of specialized gear and some additional training. Most of the issues we face are workers hanging from their fall arrest lanyard. This is a good topic to address if your training dept is reluctant to enter into this field.

    Good luck and I hope you are able to come up with a training plan that address these issues. I would begin by training with bypass lanyards, cable grab systems, ascending and descending a fixed ropes and rescue of stranded climber from below/above(fixed ropes). If you can locate an older open lattice light tower, these are great props. We have an older community college that has these towers on their football field. After you master these skills, you can move to the more challenging rope based access problems.

  3. #3
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    Jun 2012


    You really have got great safety records. The work done by you guys is amazing. Rope access rescue is also as part of rescue services which can be very beneficial at time of performing rescue operations.

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