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Tower Rescue / Structural Rescue / Confined Space:

  • Structural Tower Rescue Workshop
  • STRW Key Points
  • Details
  • Photos

STRUCTURAL-TOWER RESCUE WORKSHOP -

(See Current RTR Open Enrollment Schedule for when/where this program is offered)

The Structural Tower Rescue Workshop is an in-depth, hands-on course, emphasizing structural rescue from the ground up. The techniques used in this program are closely aligned with mountain rescue where similar bottom up procedures are used on stranded climbers above the rescue team's arriving location. Most rope rescues (>95%) are top down in nature due to the fact that the rescue team is able to easily gain access to a position above the victim's location to perform the rescue.

The STRW addresses these important distinctions early on with both structure-based and ground-based rescue techniques, provides in-depth orientation on lattice steel and monopole radio and power transmission tower construction, climbing techniques and hazards, all for the emergency responder. This is the first and only seminar carefully delineating the many hazards associated with energized power transmission lines for fire fighters. 99% of all above ground towers in the US are electrical power transmission lines. The STRW also features DVD support from the Highline Production training materials "TOWER RESCUE for EMERGENCY RESPONDERS".

Before the rescue section begins, students learn several ways of safely climbing not only towers but structures such as bridges using time-tested climbing methods, rest positions, and tips for route strategy. Many of these techniques are used today by seasoned workmen who work on towers and structures as part of their daily employment. All climbing is taught with first-up fall protection and established self belay lines for all subsequent climbers on the structure.

This rigorous workshop teaches rescue of uninjured, ill, slightly injured or injured workers or unauthorized climbers on lattice steel and monopole structures up to 40m (125'). The seven-day seminar is designed for emergency responders only and is not recommended for tower workers and linemen.

The STRW differs extensively from the Industrial Rescue Workshop (IRW) as both teach separate techniques. Different manuals and differing focuses. The IRW is more suited for top down rescue techniques (with some bottom up) but the STRW is all personal movement on rope, solo and semi-solo rescues and predominately bottom up rescues. A careful comparison of the program descriptions will reveal the focus of each workshop. 

  • Anchoring on structural steel
  • Awareness orientation on different types of towers
  • Methods of climbing with fall protection:Emergencies associated with structuresStructure size-up
    • Double lanyard
    • Advance-placed
    • Lead climbing
  • Tower types and awareness
  • Electrical power transmission towers and hazards
  • Rescue options (team or solo)
  • Climbing exposure assessment
  • Minimum tower rescue essentials
  • Medical considerations & patient assessment
  • Patient packaging while suspended (using litter scoops and the Yates Spec Pack®)
  • Ground-based versus structure-based tower rescues
  • Electrical grounding hazards
  • Radio frequency hazards
  • Personal climbing on rope:
    • Ascending and descending
    • Passing knots
    • Aid traverses
    • Self belays and true belays
  • AZTEK passing of the patient through tower
  • Skate blocks off of tower
  • Dynamic skate blocks
  • Limited raising and lowering systems:
    • Pulley systems
    • Skyhook® capstan winch
7 Days - Some days are up to 10 to 12 hours in length
12 Students
Moderately Difficult - Much climbing on steel
Classroom 30%, Practicals 70%

Prerequisites: Some rescue or climbing experience recommended
Get: RTR Application
Go to: Registration Information
Find out tuition and when and where offered: See Schedule
DOWNLOAD COLOR FLIER HERE for Michigan STRW

STRUCTURAL TOWER RESCUE WORKSHOP PHOTOS
From Ropes That Recue collection. All photos copyright RTR ©1999/2022
 
 
Manual cover from the Highline Production "TOWER RESCUE for EMERGENCY RESPONDERS". This DVD and manual authored by Reed Thörne is used on the instruction of this program from RTR.
 
STRW in Michigan where access to many varying radio cell towers make good venues for practicing tower rescue and tower climbing skills
 
Port Huron Bridge in Michigan between the USA and Canada makes the perfect playground for the Michigan STRW 
 
STRW on Port Huron Bridge between US and Canada
 
Sacramento Metro Fire's, Becky Cordova (ret.), lead climbing on the Forest Hill Bridge over 730' above the North Fork of the American River in 2007 STRW.
 
Sacramento Metro Fire's, Becky Cordova (ret.), lead climbing on the Forest Hill Bridge over 730' above the North Fork of the American River in 2007 STRW.
 
Photo 1:
2009 Roseville, California STRW working on 500kv transmission towers and lines at WAPA (Western Area power Administration) training yard in Elverta near Sacramento. 
 
Photo 2: Lead RTR Instructor Keith Thorne on top conductor as teacher
2009 Roseville, California STRW working on 500kv transmission towers and lines at WAPA (Western Area power Administration) training yard in Elverta near Sacramento. 


Photo 3:
2009 Roseville, California STRW working on 500kv transmission towers and lines at WAPA (Western Area power Administration) training yard in Elverta near Sacramento. 
 
Photo 4: Lead RTR Instructor Keith Thorne on top tower arm on yellow helmet as teacher
2009 Roseville, California STRW working on 500kv transmission towers and lines at WAPA (Western Area power Administration) training yard in Elverta near Sacramento. 
 
Photo 5: Reed Thörne on the dead end tower at WAPA.
2009 Roseville, California STRW working on 500kv transmission towers and lines at WAPA (Western Area power Administration) training yard in Elverta near Sacramento. 
 
2011 Michigan STRW with Consumers Energy at the Marshal Training Center

 

  • Industrial Rescue Workshop
  • IRW Key Points
  • Details
  • Photos

INDUSTRIAL RESCUE WORKSHOP -

(See Current RTR Open Enrollment Schedule for when/where this program is offered) (NOTE: The IRW is NOT offered each year)

The Industrial Rescue Workshop is an in-depth, hands-on course, emphasizing structural rescue from difficult locations in an industrial setting and above ground tower environment. The workshop will differ from other RTR rescue programs in that it will concentrate on both bottom up (less emphasis) and top down rescue scenarios (more emphasis). The workshop relies on extensive knotcraft skills and lashing, whipping and frapping. Also, a heavy reliance on frame building using the Rock Exotica Arizona Vortex is expected. Several full kits are available making the multiple advanced set ups possible. 

The industrial venues for the IRW are widely varied including CARTA (Central Arizona Regional Training Academy), Prescott Valley Event Center Arena, Jerome Hotel and Watson Lake Dam (all, if available). These venues are in Prescott Valley, Prescott and the town of Jerome in the Verde Valley. Extensive use of the Rock Exotica Arizona Vortex and Skyhook® Capstan Winch with both power head and cordless drill are realized in this frame-intensive workshop. Exercises involving cantilevered A frames, double A frames, and paradoxical luffing A frames along with winch rigging stands and pods are all part of the IRW at these venues in Prescott. The Arizona Vortex "Doortex" for elevator door shaft rescue is also covered in a one day commute to the historic town of Jerome.  For those wishing to get an extensive working knowledge and understanding of the capabilities of the Arizona Vortex, this program is perfectly suited. This, with the teaching of high angle offsets throughout the workshop, make this the industrial rescue program to attend. 

The IRW differs extensively from the Structural Tower Rescue Workshop in the material presented so a clear distinction is worth noting. Different manuals and differing focuses. The IRW is more suited for top down rescue techniques (with some bottom up) but the STRW is all personal movement on rope, solo and semi-solo rescues and predominately bottom up rescues.  A careful comparison of the program descriptions will reveal the focus of each workshop. 

 

INDUSTRIAL RESCUE WORKSHOP KEY POINTS

  • Structural anchoring
  • Extensive knotcraft
  • Lashing techniques for structural steel
  • Top down rescues in the structural environment
    Bottom up (less emphasis and as time permits)
  • Patient packaging while suspended-extrication using litter scoop and Yates Spec Pack®
  • Complete instruction on the versatile AZTEK kit and use in industrial rescue
  • Extensive pulley systems:
    • Working
    • Non working tensioning systems 
  • Frames (artificial high directionals) using the Arizona Vortex: (more than one kit)
    • Easel A frames
    • A frames
    • Sideways A frames
    • Cantilevered A frames
    • Dougle A frames 
    • Paradoxical luffing A frames (active guying)
    • Tandem frames (combinations)
  • Skyhook® capstan winch usage
  • High angle offsetting:
    • Two rope offsets
    • Deflection line offsets
    • Skate block offsets
7 Days - Some days are up to 10 to 12 hours in length
12 Students
Moderately Difficult
Classroom 30%, Practicals 70%

Prerequisites: None. Some rescue or climbing experience strongly recommended

Get: RTR Application
Go to: Registration Information
Find out tuition and when and where offered: See Schedule

INDUSTRIAL RESCUE WORKSHOP PHOTOS
From Ropes That Recue collection. All photos copyright RTR ©1999/2022
 
Students learning a deflection line offset high above Juneau, Alaska atop the Mount Robinson Tramway rescue workshop in 2021
RTR Senior Lead Instructor, Reed Thörne on far right looks on. 
 
RTR Assistant Instructor, Greg Sobole, attending a litter scoop below the 730' high Forest Hill Bridge near Auburn, California in 1010. 
The Forest Hill Bridge is a perfect venue for the IRW.
 
Structural staircase in Juneau, Alaska with extensive use of the Arizona Vortex as redirections 2021
 
Juneau Fire Training Center in Juneau, Alaska with extensive use of the Arizona Vortex as high directional 2022
 
Port Huron Bridge between US and Canada is great venue for Michigan IRW
 
Students learning a tracking line offset high above Juneau, Alaska atop the Mount Robinson Tramway rescue workshop in 2022
 
Students learning a dynamic skate block offset at the Juneau Fire Training Center in 2022
Extensive Arizona Vortex work is common in the IRW regardless of location. 
 
Students learning the Arizona Vortex is a large part of the IRW. Here a "bombproof" rigging bipod set up using only several AZTEKs for backtying. 
Extensive Arizona Vortex work is common in the IRW regardless of location. 
 
Lead RTR Instructor Keith Thorne (left) teaching with father Reed Thörne. Industrial Rescue in Kagawa Prefecture in Japan in 2017
 
A 550' long tracking line offset on the Auckland, New Zealand Sky Tower in 2005
 

Students working within the NASA John Glenn Research Center on a multi Vortex frame operation in 2017
 
Lead RTR Instructor Keith Thorne teaching with father Reed Thörne in Kagawa Prefecture, Japan in 2017
 
Photos 1: Seattle Fire Department Rescue 1 learning a multi-frame operation and skate block offset high atop their port cranes
Keith Thorne (in litter) 2005.Extensive Arizona Vortex work is common in the IRW regardless of location. 
 
Photos 2: Seattle Fire Department Rescue 1 using Arizona Vortex as an easel A-frame in Seahawk Stadium, downtown Seattle 2005
 
Photos 3: Seattle Fire Department Rescue 1 learning a multi-frame operation high atop their port cranes 2005.
Extensive Arizona Vortex work is common in the IRW regardless of location. 
 
Industrial Rescue Workshop in Salt Lake City, Utah using a few Arizona Vortex frames in 2018.  RTR Instructor, Darrell Coates, on right.
Very unusual and creative frame. Extensive Arizona Vortex work is common in the IRW regardless of location.