Some climber safety questions for the group

Discussion in 'Climbing Towers' started by aldenm, Oct 17, 2011.

  1. aldenm

    aldenm First Time Poster

    The article about the climber in South Carolina who had to be rescued provides more questions than answers.

    1. The article said there was another worker on site, didn't he have rescue training?
    2. What are the safety requirements of AT&T or their turfing contractors for crews working on their towers?
    3. Why didn't his co-worker climb the tower and make sure that he was okay at least or call in the emergency?
    4. If you were on the job what would you do?
    5. Was there anything here being done against OSHA regulations?

    Since the company isn't mentioned in the story I'm glad because I don't want to sound like I'm bashing them, but I think we can all learn from this.

    I'm willing to bet that it took the fire departments and rescue squads hours to get him down the rest of the way.

    It could have been fatigue, dehydration or a serious medical condition like a TIA, something you don't want to waste precious hours before getting the person to the hospital for treatment.

    I think you can rely upon the local fire departments to rescue you, but I also believe you have to check in advance to make sure that they can do high aerial rescue.

    It's frightening to think that if there were no rescuers available they would have to wait another hour or two to bring in a crane that could reach him.

    And the last question: Why do companies spend a huge amount of money on safety equipment and training, and not require their crews to use it?
  2. shaunperkins MUTI

    shaunperkins MUTI Friend of the Community

  3. shaunperkins MUTI

    shaunperkins MUTI Friend of the Community

    Once again people are relying on fire departments for rescue. What if this would have happened in a small town with a volunteer fire dept that was not trained in tower rescue or high altitude rescue? Companies need to be better equipped in dealing with these emergencies. There is no excuse for a crew not to be able to perform an in house and use the fire dept for transport to a hospital. I am not taking anything away from fire departments but time is critical when there is an emergency and we work in remote areas where it could take responders several hours to get there. Speaking for myself, I have rescue certifications from 2 companies and after I implemented our site rescue plan and got my brother down would I notify lifeflight or the fire department depending on the situation. The fire department did a great job getting our brother down; it is irresponsible of any company to send any crew out in the field and for whatever reason not be able to perform a rescue.
  4. Vizsla

    Vizsla Friend of the Community

    If this is an ATT tower why wasn't there a climbing ladder with a safety climb on it?

    Chances are there was only one man on the job and the second guy came later after the fire department got there.

    Every day there are people going out to sites alone to do punch list items on towers.

    Do you really think that companies will send two guys out when they're already losing money on the job because someone was in a rush and didn't complete the install?

    It's easy to say this was a mom and pop outfit that was cutting corners and the safety of their worker, but many times its the larger companies as well.
  5. FLIPP

    FLIPP First Time Poster

    As a climber myself for a small company, I climb towers that are way out in the middle of nowhere. If something went wrong it would take up to a day before the company realized something went wrong and it would take till the end that day before my wife suspected something was wrong.

    We carry cell phones but if you're hurt they don't do much good and even if there was another climber on the tower site, there's not much they could do other then make a call.

    It would take more than one guy to get another off a tower if they were hurt or unable to climb down themselves.

    Climbing towers is one those jobs that if things are going to go wrong they are going to go terribly wrong just hope for the best and use common sense and ALLWAYS TELL SOMEONE WHERE YOU ARE WORKING AND EXPECTED TIME HOME OR OFF THE TOWER.
  6. Clifford Bryan

    Clifford Bryan Industry Observer

    FLIPP - I disagree with your comment about not being able to get an injured worker down with only 1 other guy on site, and would say that a competent climber with rescue training would be able to perform a rescue to get even an injured and unconsious coworker off the tower and to the ground safely.

    "Hoping for the best" is not the answer.

    Be Safe-
  7. Brad Wegener

    Brad Wegener Friend of the Community

    After a decade in this business, I have been through many Comtrain classes, some where there was an actual rescue, and others where the book was on the table. There is no excuse why there wasn't an in-house rescue. I rig the tower every time I climb, it may not be a recue rope but if I trust it to pull booms, coax, etc. I would bet my life on it. I have worked for big companies, small mom and pops, and everything in between. My fisk is always near.
  8. chpalmer

    chpalmer Friend of the Community

    Im with you Clifford!... When I took my safety course we didn't get signed off until we brought a classmate down out of the tower by ourselves with no help from the classmate. I still work with and around these classmates and Im very glad to have first hand knowledge of who I want on the site to get me down should I need it...

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