High Angle & Confined Spaces, Technical Rescue

High-Angle Rope Pickoff: the “Y” Technique

Issue 04 and Volume 173.

By Mike Giroux When we talk about high-angle rope rescue—in particular, pickoffs—we are talking about using two ropes to accomplish the task. One may be a main line and the other a belay, or safety, line. We may also be using a two-line system in which both lines act as a lowering or a hauling system in which the lines function as a safety for each other. The high-angle rope evolution is much different from the roof rope evolution, which employs a single line without a safety line for the pure reason that a life is in an immediately dangerous to life or health environment and time is paramount. Pickoff techniques or protocols vary according to departments. Some have performed this evolution the same way since the inception of their departments. Others look at different techniques to determine which approaches will be safe and easy and work for them. This…

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