Technical Rope Rescue Level I - Operations

Overview


Technical Lower

An attendant in the upper litter position descends on a high angle lowering system.
Jason Martin

A car careens off the highway, dropping over a steep embankment and comes to a stop nearly two hundred feet down the rocky forty-five degree slope. Two of the car's occupants are seriously injured and need to be evacuated immediately.

The preceding scenario is one that first responders regularly encounter throughout the United States. Fire departments, paramedics and mountain rescue units often have locations in their service areas where steep or high-angle terrain exists. Those teams with the highest level of rope rescue training are able to extract these difficult patients in a timely manner without putting themselves or their teammates in harms way for an undue amount of time.

The American Alpine Institute Operations Level Rope Rescue course addresses the needs of first responders in low-angle and high-angle terrain while also providing the baseline skills required to assist Rope Rescue Technicians with complex systems.  The course meets the standards for operations dictated by NFPA 1670 while also addressing the standards set forth in NFPA 1006 and 1983.

Individuals and organizations trained at the NFPA operations level are capable of:

  • Site Control - preventing anyone else from becoming a victim through scene management.
  • Incident Identification - able to identify whether an accident site will require an operations level or a technician level response.
  • Able to perform simple patient rescues on low and high-angle terrain.
  • Able to perform operations that require the lowering and raising of a litter and/or a litter attendant.

 

Rope Rescue Operations Certificate

Individuals who complete the American Alpine Institute Operations course will receive a certificate of completion for Rope Rescue Level I: Operations.

 

Technical Rope Rescue Comprehensive

Front country rescue personnel often don't need anything beyond an Operations or Technican course. However, those who wish to operate in the backcountry should consider additional training.

The American Alpine Institute Operations Course is the first of a 14-day four-part rescue comprehensive series. The Level I Operations Course lays the groundwork. The Level II Technician Course builds on that groundwork. The Self-Rescue for Climbers program adds personal and companion rescue to your skillset. And then finally, the Advanced Mountain Rescue program takes the skills learned in the Operations, Technician, and Self-Rescue courses and builds on them with high-end mountain rescue skills.

A rescuer may choose to take one, two, three or all four parts together. Or the rescuer may choose to break up the courses into bite-sized chunks.

To learn more about the Technical Rope Rescue Comprehensive program, click here.

 

Technical Rope Rescue Level I - Operations

Curriculum

Students will demonstrate proficiency in team-rescue at the NFPA operations level on a variety of steep and high-angle terrain types.

Steep Angle Lower

A team is lowered down to a victim in a steep angle setting.  Jason Martin

 

Curriculum Highlights

  • Hauling Systems - 3:1, 6:1 and 9:1
  • Pulley Systems - simple, compound and complex
  • Lowering Systems - with a break rack and scarab
  • Anchor Systems
  • Lowering Systems with a Litter
  • Use of a Guiding Line
  • Patent Packaging - with and without a harness
  • Specialized Rescue Equipment - including discussions of Class I-III harnesses, chest harnesses, rigging plates, pulleys, swivels, edge protection, and tripods
  • Improvised Rescue Equipment - waist and chest harnesses, high points, and improvised anchors
  • Rope Climbing Techniques
  • Belays - tandem prusik and mechanical belays
  • Scene Management - command structure
  • Helicopter Operations
  • Physics of Rescue Systems on Anchors and on Equipment
  • Rappelling Techniques
  • Knots - figure-eight family, overhand, double-overhand-on-a-bite, bowline, double bowline, long-tail bowline, high tension tie-off, wrap-three-pull-two, and wrap-two-pull-one
  • Bends - double-fisherman's, water bend, double sheet bend, frost bend
  • Hitches - prusik, and munter
  • Load Releasable Hitches - radium-release

 

Required Text

Technical Rescue Riggers Guide by Rick Lipke

This text may be purchased at the American Alpine Institute Shop or online.

 

Prerequisites

Participants should have a good level of fitness. Baseline knowledge of knots and hitches can be helpful, but is not required.

Technical Rope Rescue Level I - Operations

Dates & Details

  • April 22 - 25, 2017 - Bellingham, WA
  • September 23 - 26, 2017 - Bellingham, WA
  • October 14 - October 17, 2017 - Bellingham, WA

 

A Note about the Operations vs. Technician Level

American Alpine Institute Rope Rescue Operations courses are often followed immediately by NFPA compliant Technician Level courses.  If you would like to take both courses in a row, please inquire with the American Alpine Institute office.

 

Inclusions and Exclusions

Included with the tuition are instructors, group equipment (both rescue and climbing), classroom location, permit fees, and transportation to and from field program locations.

Excluded are front-country lodging, personal climbing equipment, transportation to the classroom, food, trip insurance, camping equipment, and guide gratuities.

 

Private Programming 

Any portion of this program, either the complete program or individual pieces of the program may be provided privately at any appropriate location. Please call the American Alpine Institute office for a quote. 

Technical Rope Rescue Level I - Operations

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