Rescue Response Gear is now a distributor of the iRescue inflatable rescue board by C4
A new video of the iRescue inflatable in action, was filmed on location in Hawaii by Raven Collective media. Utilizing C4’s proprietary state-of-the-art inflatable construction, international water safety experts Brian Keaulana and Archie Kalepa have refined and perfected these new rescue tools in the rough and unforgiving waters of the Hawaiian Islands, drawing on their decades of devising, practicing, and teaching their revolutionary ocean rescue techniques to scores of government, military, and private organizations around the world.
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In addition to Rigging Lab’s own courses, we work with outside training companies who we will occasionally host courses in the Rigging Lab as well as on location. One of these is Peak Rescue Institute. Peak Rescue is made up of trainers from a variety of professional backgrounds with a broad range of experience relevant to the technical rescue field. Many of the instructors are professional firefighters. Several have careers in the lifeguard service. As a group, they have over 200 years of experience in technical rescue.
Upcoming courses from Peak Rescue:
- 2012 — April 20-26 — Technician and Specialist Courses will run concurrently.
- Location – Joshua Tree National Park
Technician and Specialist Courses — $1150
Tuition for both courses include meals and camping fees.
PRI’s Technician Level Course is an entry level program and no prior experience is required. However, even skilled rescuers will be challenged. The curriculum was developed to meet NFPA 1006 guidelines for Rope Technicians. The curriculum covers both individual and team based skills and includes:
The course culminates with a mock rescue scenario where each student will function as a rescue team member in a real time exercise.
- Rescue Equipment
- Hazard Mitigation
- Ascending Fixed Lines
- Rescue Pickoffs (individual and team)
- Terrain Assessment
- Litter Handling
- Patient Movement
- Lowering Systems
- Belay Techniques
- Mechanical Advantage Systems
- Tensioned Guiding Lines
- Functioning as a Team Member
Successful completion of a skills test will be required to obtain a NFPA 1006 certificate.
Successful completion of the Technician Level course will allow graduates, assuming continuing practice, to function effectively as a rope rescue team member.
PRI’s Specialist Level course is designed for Technician Level graduates who have a solid background in technical rope rescue and have a desire to build on their skills. As a prerequisite for our Specialist Course, you must have completed a 40-hour minimum Technician level rope rescue course. You must submit documentation of course completion. You may be asked to submit a course description or curriculum if we are not familiar with the specific course that you attended. On the first day of the Specialist Course, students must successfully pass an evaluation of Technician Level skills. Please refer to the Specialist Course policy below.
The advanced rigging techniques and equipment addressed will include:
Less time will be spent on specific techniques and more time on concepts in rescue. There are often a number of ways to accomplish the same task and students will be encouraged to apply what they know to rescue solutions.
- Advanced Single Rope Techniques
- Advanced Mechanical Advantage Systems
- Options for Ascending and Descending
- New Tools and Technology
- Team Dynamics and Leadership
- Effective Highline Alternatives
- Implementing Directionals
Several “real time” scenarios will be presented including a night exercise. Students will be encouraged to take leadership roles on the team.
Completion of the Specialist Level Course will increase the graduates effectiveness on their rescue team and give them needed skills to begin to take a leadership role.
by Kit Tosello
Most days of the week, giant boxes loaded with life-saving equipment – ropes, harnesses, headlamps and carabiners - depart from Sisters, en route to rescue organizations worldwide.
Now Lance and Monica Piatt, owners of Rescue Response Gear, are expanding their scope of operations in Sisters to include a state-of-the-art training facility and filming studio. The couple recently moved their growing company to larger digs in the former Weitech Building, across from the post office on Larch Street.
A soaring climbing wall and extensive rigging for the production of technical training videos is the central feature of their new headquarters.
Lance feels fortunate to have found a location locally that met his need for a 25-foot ceiling height.
“I thought we’d have to move out of Sisters,” he says.
He credits Mac Hay, the city’s economic development manager, building owner Stuart Weitzman, and developer Steve McGhehey with encouraging a creative solution. Lance first discussed the idea of leasing the warehouse portion only for his two new ventures: the Rigging Lab, a gear training school; and Raven Collective Media, a film production company. That would have split his operations into two facilities.
“I’ve been looking at and praying about this building for a couple years. Steve and Stu were very flexible with our needs and allowed us to move our entire operation,” said Lance.
The lower east wing of the large building is now home to Rescue Response Gear’s administrative, sales, and shipping functions as well as the Rigging Lab and Raven Collective Media.
Sixteen years ago, Lance and Monika took over a small, web-based business that provided rescue equipment to fire departments, search and rescue organizations, and various government agencies. Now that their company has grown to an 11-person team, Lance believes that the key to future growth is providing top-notch gear education.
Lance says that he has hired expert staff, and students from near and far have already begun signing up for Rigging Lab courses in technical rescue training and rope access equipment.
Efforts were made to bring the outdoors inside and to create a facility that functions year-round, despite inclement weather. Classes make use of a full-scale climbing wall as well as the building’s structural ceiling joists. Phil Rerat, of Swiss Mountain Log Homes, installed massive 27-foot pine timbers that run from floor to ceiling. “The log accents bring in the aesthetics of our backyard,” says Lance. “Clients have the feeling of being outside. And they just look cool.”
A bonus draw for students, he says, is that participants “don’t have to go anywhere else to play outside. If they’re looking for a destination as part of the package, we’ve got an amazing and awesome place here.
“There’s cultural viability between what Sisters Country has and what we do. It all revolves around the outdoors and making people safe.”
Piatt plans to coordinate with local lodging facilities and recreational outfitters, such as whitewater excursions, for his clients.
Meanwhile, his new filming studio, Raven Collective Media, is working in tandem with the Rigging Lab to produce training demonstration films. Lance had black-drop walls installed and invested heavily in technical lighting equipment. Rick Johnson, of Strata Unlimited and Fluid Images, was an indispensible resource. According to Piatt, it wouldn’t have been possible without “his equipment, his understanding of lighting and knowledge of rigging needs.”
One medium for their video education, says Piatt, will be broadcasting over what he is calling RRGTV. “RRGTV allows people all over the world to see what we do.”
In addition to supplying lifesaving gear internationally, two of the most satisfying aspects of his company’s growth, says Lance, are the ability to provide local jobs, and opportunities to work alongside the Sisters High School Interdisciplinary Environmental Expedition program (IEE).
Visit www.rescueresponse.com for more information.
To see this article go to www.NuggetNews.com
Rescue Response Gear would like to introduce you to our go-to coffee supplier for all our coffee needs:
We support Sisters Coffee Company because we share similar passions.
We support Sisters Coffee Company because we share the same neighbors.
We support Sisters Coffee Company because well… they roast great coffee!
Sometimes, you just crave a great cup of coffee.
Enter-to-Win Sterling Rope’s Canyoneering Personal Rescue Package when you sign up for our eSpecials & Industry Updates eLetter!
The Sterling Rope Canyoneering Personal Rescue Package (retail value $73.90) will be given away by Sterling Rope during the January 2012 Rescue Response Gear “Featured Manufacturer Prize Giveaway“. One winner will be selected for the package. Be sure to sign up for the RRG weekly eLetter. Doing so gives you a chance at winning the Sterling Rope Canyoneering package, RRG’s annual “$100 Gift Certificate” and includes you in our weekly eSpecials and eLetter updates.
Thank you, Sterling Rope.
One individual will win the Sterling Rope package on January 15, 2012.
Sterling ATS Rappel & Belay Device
The ATS device (All Terrain Sender) is a versatile belay and rappel device designed for both rock climbing and canyoneering. This unique device accommodates the need for various friction settings on rappel and belay, as well as auto lock-off belay options. The ATS incorporates the best parts of a tube or plate device and a figure 8 with hyper-horns into one compact durable frame.
Sterling Rope Chain Reactor
The replacement for the traditional sewn daisy chain. The Chain Reactor absorbs enough energy to withstand three factor 2 drops.
Kayakers: Use as a tow/rescue line
Climbers: Replacement of the daisy chain
Sterling Rope Hollow Block Bound Loop
The Hollow Block is a unique sewn prusik or climb heist made from our RIT 900 cord.
The Secret is out, Rescue Response Gear has moved into a new facility. This larger facility will house not only the office and warehouse for RRG, but a new training facility called the Rigging Lab. This will also make an ideal filming studio for Raven Collective Media to film any technical rescue, rigging, arborist, rope access or safety training workshops.
The reason for doing this? Simple. Rescue Response Gear is spreading it’s wings to embrace an holistic approach to rescue and rigging through the use of video education, training workshops and human and soulful media projects (Raven Collective Media Video). By using streaming video, which came first out of the need to assist in technical sales, we have now moved towards a more helpful expression of what we (RRG) can do to assist clients with systems and thus gear (education). Our suppliers quality products will be showcased by our “Brand in Use” approach through creative and branded video pieces.
Our Rigging Lab in our new facility will host most of these training workshops and will double as the studio where Raven Collective Media will film these hosted events as well non-hosted RRG training events. Some of the training will be done by ATS, Peak Rescue and VRS, along with Pat Rhodes of RescueRig.
The quality gear being used will come from suppliers such as CMC, Sterling Rope, Petzl and Rock Exotica, just to name a few. We will have more information coming out soon about our first rigging training in January 2012 being held in the Rigging Lab.
Rescue Response Gear
September 30, 2011 “Featured Manufacturer Prize Giveaway” Winner
Kenneth Young of Wexford, Pennsylvania
Prize: Eddie Bauer First Ascent Guide Gloves (Retail value $119.00)
September 23, 2011 “Featured Manufacturer Prize Giveaway” Winner
Mathias Frick of Canton, Georgia
Prize: Eddie Bauer First Ascent Maximus 150 Duffel Bag (Retail value $149.00)
September 16, 2011 “Featured Manufacturer Prize Giveaway” Winner
Robert Whitehead of Spokane, Washington
Prize: Eddie Bauer First Ascent Maximus 150 Duffel Bag (Retail value $149.00)
September 9, 2011 “Featured Manufacturer Prize Giveaway” Winner
David Kafer of Grand Lake, Colorado
Prize: Eddie Bauer First Ascent Guide Gloves (Retail value $119.00)
This article gives a good over view of the Rope Access Industry as it pertains to the oil and gas industry in the Middle East market. It also shows the value for companies who chose to use Rope Access.
Rope access specialists are targeting the upstream market with an array of in-house hydroblasting and NDT service packages.
- Tuesday, 12 January 2010 4:00 AM
Rope access specialists are targeting the upstream market with an array of in-house hydroblasting and NDT service packages.
Upstream and midstream oil and gas installations offer some of the most hostile working conditions, and most complicated infrastructure, of any industry in the Gulf. From oil storage tanks to working at heights of over 100 metres cold-cutting steel on jack-up rigs, access to critical components is made doubly difficult by the stringent safety requirements imposed on contractors.
With this in mind, Oil & Gas Middle East sought out the leading rope access and hydroblasting experts in the Middle East, and found that for firms which can offer time and money saving service packages, business is booming.
Rope access originated in France and was imported in the UK in the early 1980s. Initially used onshore and accepted as a safe and cost effective alternative to traditional access systems such as scaffolding, rope access soon found its way into the offshore oil and gas industry. The leading firms operating in the UAE say that a rope access system can be set up safely and quickly and have the technician at the worksite in minutes where other access systems can take hours or even days to erect.
“Increasingly we’re being called out for offshore installation shut-downs. Just recently we completed a tower demolition for Dubai Petroleum.”From the call out, a team can be assembled, equipped and flown out to a rig, with work underway within 24 hours. The ease of mobilisation, and the fact that a total shut-down is not required (as is often the case with a scaffold solution), is a big factor when time is money.
Ian Caffery, general manager of Arabian Access Solutions says the advantages of speed onshore are magnified for jobs in the offshore environment. “With a scaffold team you need an additional ten to twelve beds, plus the added time it takes to organise the logistics of all the equipment and installation. From arrival, a rope access team can be working in around thirty minutes.”
Whilst clearly specialised work, which requires an astonishing head for heights, the standard process is not to look for abseiling experts and give them a trade. Rather, skilled tradesmen in their field are selected and given the rope access training, often in-house.
“Whether they be electricians, welders, inspectors first, we bring in our trainer from the UK who will bring them up to required standard for rope access work. Of course, we do try to enhance the skill sets once people are working for us. So if someone is a UT inspector, we would train them up to MPI. We provide all of the internal training necessary for offshore such as the H2S training and helicopter evacuation certifications,” explains Harkin.
Megarme has carried out inspection and maintenance work for most of the region’s biggest oil and gas companies. “We’ve worked for Dolphin and RasGas in Qatar, ZADCO, GASCO in the UAE and the firm is planning to open a Bahrain office in 2010, with the hope of penetrating the lucrative Saudi Arabian market. “We have found in the past it is very difficult to crack the Saudi Arabian upstream sector from a remote office. Bahrain will hopefully act as something of a gateway for us there,” says Harkin.The array of tasks which the leading rope access firms are now regularly called upon is impressive, and growing. From simple hydroblasting to strip paint before an inspection, right through to super-high pressure jetting at 40,000 psi (which can cut steel) and ultrasonic and magnetic particle inspection services, the firms have swollen their skill sets in order to capture rewarding upstream inspection contracts.
“We are evolving into a credible inspection agency in our own right. Rather than being primarily a rope access outfit, we are constantly rolling out additional services, otherwise companies in the inspection business will move into the rope access field,” observes Harkin.
Megarme is currently aiming to have a full radiographic inspection centre in Abu Dhabi, open in 2010. “Even though it represents a relatively small part of the inspection remit, if a company is tendering for a full three-year inspection contract it wants you to have it all in house – it’s simpler for the end user to have one company to deal with rather than half a dozen subcontracting firms,” he says.
Caffery concurs, adding that the specialist skills and inspection work remit is a vital part of the Arabian Access offering. He says the crucial difference is being able to provide a stable of services geared around the needs of the oil and gas industry, and that the marketplace for qualified firms is still relatively uncrowded.
“Having spent a year working at Dubai Petroleum as a project manager I was able to see lots of gaps in the market compared to the services offered in the North Sea oil industry, so bringing the skills and equipment over to plug that gap has been our remit since we launched a year ago.”
The combination of rope access and non-destructive testing capabilities has proven not only recession-resistant, but in fact, a tough climate was the ideal time to launch, Caffery explains. “As a company we were not deterred by the collapse in confidence around our launch in January 2009. We’re in a position where we can offer huge savings to the industry, so in many ways it was a good time to launch and we’ve surpassed expectations for our first year.”
Despite the dangers inherent in working at height, or in hard-to-reach areas, rope access has a strong safety record, and is fast being recognised as one of the safest methods of carrying out operations that are perceived as dangerous.
“The statistics show that rope access is one of the safest methods of carrying out work at height. In the civil engineering field this is important, but that HSE requirement is stepped up another level in the upstream world,” says Harkin.
Arabian Access Solutions is also pioneering new techniques for some of the most dangerous and unappealing jobs in the oil business – tank cleaning. It is still common in the Gulf for a team of workers to enter storage tanks and manually dig the sludge and residues out. “Obviously there is a huge HSE issue there, not to mention climbing up and down 20 metre ladders with sludge on their boots in the heat of the summer. Those are truly horrible conditions to work in. We have a modified suction pump solution which we lower into the tank, which means people don’t have to go in at all. It cuts down the number of people going in to the tank and in terms of scheduling, it slashes the time taken to get the job done.”
As oil companies and EPC contractors alike continue to keep cost control at the top of the agenda for 2010, going direct to rope access and hydro blasting and non-destructive testing certified firms could spell significant cash savings.
“Quite often, a lot of our upstream work has been subcontracted down from the EPC company, through the various layers of the construction or maintenance chain. It ends up sub-contracted to a fairly high level, but of course if companies came to us direct there are far fewer people creaming a margin off the service cost, so it could be a lot cheaper,” concludes Harkin.
2010 Arabian Business Publishing Ltd. All rights reserved.
How can you know that your generous donations are making the impact you intended in the world? This has been a big year for charitable giving. The disaster in Haiti alone raised billions of dollars, much of which has not been implemented to improve the living conditions of those affected. A majority of giving was directed to larger, highly visible organizations backed by celebrities or politicians passionately involved in the crisis. Yet the evidence of the impact of this momentum in giving is lacking. What happened? How do you ensure that your contributions are making it to the cause they were intended for?
The most effective solution is to look for smaller organizations who are doing effective direct aid. ERSLA, “Emergency Response Services for Latin America”, is working with great efficiency, on a relatively small budget, to generate the impact you intended. So what are the advantages of donating to smaller organizations such as ours?
Donor Choice-Direct Impact
Knowing the outcome of your involvement allows you to be an active agent of change. Many organizations, such as ERSLA, provide project specific information where you, the donor, are able to decide the specific organizational project you would like to support. For example, you can direct your support towards any of our five current projects. In Nicaragua, we are distributing water filters, making emergency equipment donation transfers, providing physical fitness training for firefighters, constructing smoke free stoves, and educating children on burn prevention. By nature of the size of our organization, we can offer you, the donor, specific options to choose the project you want to support. This flexibility, coupled with our commitment to donor communication in the form of stories and photos, allows you a close-up experience of our shared work as it happens.
Sustainability through relationships
Not only are we available to communicate with donors, our projects keep us close to the ground, in touch with the people we serve. Every day we are out working with communities and individuals, listening to their stories, understanding their needs, and monitoring the effectiveness of your donations at work. As a small organization we are well positioned by our relationships to do effective direct aid, including managing the sustainability of our projects.
A great example of this is our water filter campaign. Safe drinking water is a need in the communities we service, by its essence it has become a key focus in our work. Our model of distribution partners with local firefighters who not only distribute filters but provide public education, build community relations and accountability. Recipients know their friends (the firefighters) will be monitoring their use and available to assist with individual questions. This model also provides the opportunity for the firefighters to offer home safety inspections and teaching opportunities, thus preventing possible accidents in the future.
Transparency and Program Monitoring
Originally conceived as a way to offer transparency to donors, GPS tracking also allows for effective follow-up with recipients. This simple system provides a great link between donors and recipients that keeps this connection personal. Using methods such as GPS mapping for our projects allows donors to know exactly where their donation went and who received it. Then comes follow-up. We provide scheduled follow-up visits to make sure that if there is a future problem or question from the recipient, they are able to receive an answer. The importance of this step was clear when we recently discovered a manufacturing defect in a series of water filters delivered last year. The taps had broken on a significant number of donated containers and ERSLA was able to resolve the issue with the manufacturer and utilize the firefighters in the area to correct the problem.
With the implementation of GPS tracking of filter deliveries, ERSLA discovered that we were actually geo-mapping communities that had not been mapped before, or had not been updated. This methodology captures useful information that we pass on to the communities we are working with. As a small organization built on real relationships, we are flexible enough to capture opportunities such as these and put them to work.
The world is littered with failed projects due to small defects or lack of monitoring. With smaller organizations it is much easier for individual donors to keep track of their donations. ERSLA has had cases where donors have emailed, called, or even visited and requested to see their previous donation in action. ERSLA has been able to go directly to the recipient, gather current information, photos, or even introduce the donor to the recipient. This is a task very difficult for larger organizations to accomplish.
Access to Involvement
Many donors would rather contribute time than money. We are small enough to accommodate your first-hand participation in our shared work. This element of flexibility makes it easier to customize a program that fits with a volunteer’s schedule. Without having to focus on volume programs where volunteers come for a specific time period, or travel to only one site, ERSLA is able to take into consideration the availability and desires of anyone interested in rolling up their sleeves to help others.
A great example of this type of program is our new long-term volunteer, Gerard Deffenbaugh. Gerard has 8 months available in his schedule before attending law school and wants to improve his Spanish while also offering specific physical fitness training to firefighters through a system called “CrossFit.” ERSLA has been able to arrange housing, language classes, and contacts needed with a group of firefighters who have resources available for fitness training, but don’t necessarily have access to modern equipment. This type of service offers Gerard and other volunteers the opportunity to design programs that maximize their individual talents and enhance their experience as volunteers. In the words of Gerard, “I choose to invest my time with ERLSA because working with a smaller organization allows me to tailor my skills and experience in a way that would be very difficult with larger organizations.”
Proportionate Administrative Costs
Of course we do have administrative costs. We need electricity, gasoline, food, and services just like any other type of work. But instead of implementing a percentage of overall donations to cover these costs, we include a small amount into each donation with the understanding that the volume of donations will support the administrative needs. By doing this, we are able to maintain a system by which our donors are able to ask the question “Where did my money go?” and we are able to answer. A phone number is available to donors which they can reach our directors and volunteers in the field. At any time, if a donor would like to communicate with the person that has specifically managed their donation, it is possible. This is a service not available with larger organizations.
This holiday season, when you are considering putting your resources in the hands of those in need, look at the value of your donation, and think of ERSLA. We can assure you that, when you team up with us, the gift of your generosity allows you to be more than just a financial donor but truly involved in effective direct aid.
How you can Contribute:
For more information email us at email@example.com or call 478-787-4889.
To donate, go to www.ersla.org and click the “Donate Now” button to pay through paypal, or send a check to:
P.O. Box 925
Bonaire, GA 31005
Consider a gift donation:
Many donors have asked for gift donations in their name for the holidays; others have donated in the name of friends, co-workers, or family members. ERSLA will make sure to send a note and photo to the gift donor as well. It is a great gift for someone that is hard to buy for.
Every little bit helps. Please pass this on to your friends and family so we can help families have clean drinking water.
Thank you for your support.
Latin American Director
Emergency Response Services for Latin America