ffj's journal II Rope Rescue Technician

What skills to learn, what tools to get
ffj
Posts: 1614
Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2010 3:16 am

Re: ffj's journal II Rope Rescue Technician

Post by ffj » Mon Dec 04, 2017 10:28 am

Method Two for Ascending Rope

This method is called the RAD method, which stands for rapid ascent/descent. It might be proprietary to Petzl, but I'm not completely sure. It is a great system however due to the ability to raise or lower yourself with minimal fuss. You'll need a Petzl I'D, a small pulley, and a mechanical ascender, and an optional foot loop. These products are all made by Petzl in the photo but keep in mind that other manufacturers exist with similar products. You can also substitute devices also, for example, a prusik loop instead of a mechanical ascender. However, the set-up below works very well.


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Basically we will load the ID for a lower, keeping in mind that the handle must be in the neutral position to be able to advance.

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Then we will attach our rescucender above the ID and attach our pulley and tail of our rope through the pulley. We have basically now created a 2:1 mechanical advantage system to help pull us up the rope.

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Now we have two options to climb. The first is using a simple body thrust while pulling on the tail of the rope.

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When the I'D reaches the pulley, one simply advances the Rescucender further up the rope and performs more body thrusts to ascend. When you have reached your goal, simply place the I'D in a locked position, and remove the Rescucender and pulley from the rope. You are now free to unlock your I'D and descend or remain in a locked position.

The other option is even easier and that simply entails adding a foot loop to the Rescucender. Instead of a body thrust, one steps up into the loop and with the left hand holding the handle of the Rescucender. While stepping up, the right hand pulls down on the tail of the rope.

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ffj
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Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2010 3:16 am

Re: ffj's journal II Rope Rescue Technician

Post by ffj » Tue Dec 05, 2017 10:09 am

Method Three for Climbing Rope

This method works especially well if one has to climb a considerable distance, but unlike the previous two examples this method is strictly for ascending, which means that if one wants to descend than they must convert to a lower system. There are certain procedures one must learn in order to convert safely and efficiently which I will cover in another segment or edit into this post later, but keep in mind that you will not be going down with what I am about to show. I don't want anybody to get stuck hanging on a rope, so it is imperative you must know how to convert safely before you attempt this method!

The equipment is fairly basic: a mechanical hand ascender, a pulley, a foot loop, and a Petzl Croll, which is simply a mechanical ascender designed to attach to your harness. Again, other companies besides Petzl makes these products but Petzl usually leads innovation in rope work.

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Start by attaching the Croll to your ascending line and the hand ascender above it. Create your 2:1 mechanical advantage by placing the foot loop strap into the pulley and once you place a foot into the loop you are ready to climb. Again, before you try this method, you must be able to escape it safely, because once you weight the rope you will effectively be "captured" until you unweight the device.

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Climbing simply involves standing in the foot loop, sitting down ( the Croll will self-advance), advancing the hand descender, and repeating those steps until you've reached your objective. This is by far the fastest method to climb and if your ascent involves long distances than this a great system to use.

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Instead of a foot loop creating a 2:1 mechanical advantage system, we can substitute a foot ascender that attaches to your foot, which is even more quick for ascending, but the 2:1 saves more energy. I'll have to show that method in a later post.

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Gilberto de Piento
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Re: ffj's journal II Rope Rescue Technician

Post by Gilberto de Piento » Wed Dec 06, 2017 9:28 am

The other day I saw someone ascend a rope using just a cordelette instead of prusiks and slings. I thought that could be useful as an option in case the other items aren't available. I didn't take a picture of it though so I'm not exactly sure how he did it.

ffj
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Re: ffj's journal II Rope Rescue Technician

Post by ffj » Wed Dec 06, 2017 9:45 am

Oh yeah, there are many ways to climb rope and what I am showing is typical of what a rope technician would use. A tree climber, or a rock climber etc, are going to use different methods or variations of what I've shown. If your job is to hang off of a rope all day than you will use the lightest and easiest method you can get away with and a rock climber isn't going to slug a Petzl I'D up a rock face. I like watching the tree guys climb as they have all sorts of innovative ways but it isn't practical for rope rescue as we have to anticipate two-man loads (victim and rescuer) on all of our gear.

Also, what I've chosen to show is fairly easy for the rescuer to accomplish, both physically and ease of set-up. Most of your rescuers(U.S.) are going to be firemen, who in addition to other extensive training they have to maintain, quite frankly don't get a whole lot of time on rope. Unless you belong to a department that is located next to an area with high incidence rates. You have to keep it simple and within the skill-set range of a typical firefighter or a rescue is not going to go well or take an inordinate amount of time. I've watched tree guys climb with a foot-lock and a single prusik loop just fly up a rope. Not going to happen in the fire service. :)

Are you familiar with the klemheist? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Klemheist_knot The guy you saw with the cordelette could have been using that.

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