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Aerial rescue: vital training for arborists

Aerial rescue: vital training for arborists

Richard Tregoweth - Tuesday, January 24, 2012

There is an excellent Aerial Rescue (Part 1) article in the latest edition of Arb Climber written by Jo Hedger and Ade Scott..

Among other things, Jo and Ade make a couple of very important observations.

One, not all emergency services will have the ability to get an injured climber down from aloft in a timely fashion.

And the arrival of specialized personnel on site may take longer than you think. When they do finally arrive they might be unfamiliar with setting a new access line and ascending into the tree. (Many height access rescuers are trained to work 'top-down' not bottom-up).

Two, regardless of the comment above, once emergency personnel are on site they effectively take over the accident scene.

"You have to remember that they have no way of knowing what your (work crew) skill levels are; the situation would be similar to them (emergency personnel) turning up to a road crash and taking a bystander's word for it that he is a doctor…"

So… its probably a good idea to send a second climber aloft BEFORE the emergency services arrive.

Apart from being in a position to provide assistance and reassurance to your colleague, the arriving ambulance crew will more than likely accept you are capable of helping them if you are already in the tree.

Obviously, for this to work, the second climber must be capable of performing such an act!

That's where aerial rescue training comes in.

Every arb company should set aside time for aerial rescue training.

If you need help with setting set up an Aerial Rescue training program talk with Rossy Ross from Pro Climb or the boys from Thought Planters.

As it happens, Pro Climb already have Aerial Rescue Workshops planned for the Wellington region early February.

Self Rescue and Basic Rescue, modeled on concepts for emergency rescue by Treemagineer Mark Bridge will be covered on Tuesday February 7, followed by Complex Aerial Rescue on Wednesday February 8 - contact Rossy at Pro Climb for more details.

James Kilpatrick Aerial RescueWorld-class tree climber James Kilpatrick completing the Aerial Rescue event at the 2011 NZ Arbor/Husqvarna National TCC in Masterton during November

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