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  • RIT search rope?

    I was wondering if anyone could shed some light on using a search rope in RIT operations?

    How does your dept use it?
    What kind of rope do you use and how long?
    Do you use a separate rope bag or is your rope stored in the same bag as your RIT pack?
    Do you use it in residential buildings?
    Pros and cons of using search rope for RIT.

    Any information would be appreciated.

  • #2
    How does your dept use it?
    - Anchor point outside, 2nd man on team carries it. When the FAST search team enters, they use the rope.

    What kind of rope do you use and how long?
    - 200' of 1/2" rope I believe. It's nothing special.

    Do you use a separate rope bag or is your rope stored in the same bag as your RIT pack?
    - Rope in it's own bag. Seatbelt style clip on the bag so it can be dropped if necessary.

    Do you use it in residential buildings?
    - Yes.

    Pros and cons of using search rope for RIT.
    - On our FAST response, we send in a 3 or 4 man search team. They bring the search rope. It's anchored outside and they bring the bag with them. Once located, if more help is needed, the next team can simply follow the rope in. Also helps to lead their way out quickly.

    - It can become a tanglement hazard. It can get in the way of FF operations.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

    Comment


    • #3
      How does your dept use it?
      - Clip carabeaner that's on the end of the rope to an anchor point when the search team is going in. Last guy on the search team carries it and the rope deploys on their way in. Extraction team can then go ahead and follow the rope right in to meet up with the search team and/or the downed ff.

      What kind of rope do you use and how long?
      - 200' of small poly rope, forget exact dia. It's nothing special.

      Do you use a separate rope bag or is your rope stored in the same bag as your RIT pack?
      - Its one bag, but the rope bag can be dropped from the rest of the RIT bag. This allows you to get the downed FF breathing off the RIT bag and out of the building without having to worry about the rope.

      Do you use it in residential buildings?
      - Yes.

      Pros and cons of using search rope for RIT.
      - Helps the extraction team get to the search team and downed ff without having to waste time actually searching. Provides for a known/faster route bag out of the building.

      - Can become entanglement hazard, and if it doesn't pay out of the bag perfect it may slow you down.

      Comment


      • #4
        When you find the downed firefighter you tie your rope off at the firefighters location and then follow the rope out leaving the rope in place?

        Comment


        • #5
          Tying off and leaving the rope during the down ff removal is where the entanglement hazard is. If you have room great, if not try having the "lead" member on the way out collect it quick. Search ropes are good, but good / proper "rope management" is the key.

          Comment


          • #6
            When you find the downed firefighter you tie your rope off at the firefighters location and then follow the rope out leaving the rope in place?
            Not us. We find the FF, the rope bag gets placed nearby. If more manpower is needed, then 1 guy secures the rope so other team can use it to find them. When removing the FF, last team member in line holds the rope tight and collects it as he follows everyone out.
            "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

            Comment


            • #7
              Bones - Have you had any problem with the Rescue FF's & Down FF getting caught or entangled in the rope in a narrow hallway / aisle when leaving the rope tight and in place?

              Comment


              • #8
                No. The rope is left loose while we are packaging. When it's time to leave, the rope gets snugged up a bit, so it's easier for the exiting guys to follow. They are not clipped onto the rope, it's held by hand. Not all of the guys will hold it, usually just the first guy as he guides everyone out. Last guy on the line is holding the snuggness and moving with the exit team.

                In a narrow space, you could have the first guy in line collecting the rope as he goes and the team just follows him.
                "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

                Comment


                • #9
                  We just started using Sterling Seachlite reflective rope. It's orange in color and when hit with a flashlight, it reflects light and really stands out. I can shine a light into a room in heavy smoke and the entire rope lights up. It's fire resistant and heavy enough to easily lay flat.

                  We keep 220' in an RIT brand Chicago style nomex bag with seat belt style quick release. There is also a blue stobe light on the shoulder strap so people can quickly ID the rope bag guy. The rope has a large carabiner type hook on the anchor end and it's attached to a D-Ring in the bottom of the bag. We considered doing knots and a ring every 20' so you could judge distance and direction, but for now it's just a straight rope.

                  The bag is carried by the FF at the rear of the group. The rope is coiled so it pays out easily. We have had no issues so far with training. When it comes time to turn back, the rope bag FF becomes the last man out grabbing the rope in loose coils on the way out. All FF have individual search lines so they can tie on to the search line if they need to search a room.

                  We would use it any fire where smoke conditions were heavy and/or fire conditions were not well known.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    We have a large area search bag that has 200' of 8mm rope. It also contains two hand ropes 20' in length for two separate fireman who will search off the rope. The driver carries the bag. The officer directs the operation and has a TIC. Two Fireman will search off the rope. They clip into rings placed every 20'. Knots are also tied so that you can count with your hand how many feet you are in the building.

                    *We use our large area search in big box stores but it can be used for search in a complex residential home, etc.
                    *200' of rope is our max we will enter. When we reach the end of rope we will pull out and enter again using another entry point.

                    I think it is important to point out that a RIC assignment/deployment is not the same as using a rope to search nor is it the same as a large area search using a bag. They are unique and used in different situations. They are just as different as search and rescue although they are always lumped together.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      So sad a "Probie with Leather" thread has well over 2,000 views and this thread with a skills/tactics question has a mere 400 views.

                      Obviously see what the general membership is more interested in and where this board is headed.

                      What a joke.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by BKDRAFT View Post
                        So sad a "Probie with Leather" thread has well over 2,000 views and this thread with a skills/tactics question has a mere 400 views.

                        Obviously see what the general membership is more interested in and where this board is headed.

                        What a joke.
                        It is easier to say something nasty about what the probie is doing, than to intelligently discuss tactics and functional equipment.

                        My department is looking to buy some new search ropes, can anyone speak to the durability of the Sterling Searchlite rope that has already been mentioned? I like that it is highly visible, but does it stay that way after being dragged around through nasty stuff more than a few times?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          1" hose instead of rope

                          Recently heard from LA city guys (I think) that they use 1" hose for their RIT instead of rope. Still very fast and light but provides added benefit of H20 if necessary. Clip hose to first RIT member's SCBA waist strap, go fast searching for downed FF, clip to downed FF's scba and perform assessment. 2nd crew member carries in air - ensures functioning SCBA, etc.
                          These 2 package for removal while officer in third position calls outside team to take up slack in hose and perform any necessary actions to effect rescue.

                          Sounds good to us, we are starting to train with different configurations and hope to implement something similar in near future.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by whiskerdo View Post
                            Recently heard from LA city guys (I think) that they use 1" hose for their RIT instead of rope. Still very fast and light but provides added benefit of H20 if necessary. Clip hose to first RIT member's SCBA waist strap, go fast searching for downed FF, clip to downed FF's scba and perform assessment. 2nd crew member carries in air - ensures functioning SCBA, etc.
                            These 2 package for removal while officer in third position calls outside team to take up slack in hose and perform any necessary actions to effect rescue.

                            Sounds good to us, we are starting to train with different configurations and hope to implement something similar in near future.
                            Sounds like a nice idea, but how do you carry and deploy the hose? And 200' of 1" would be completley unrealitic to carry in. Dragging the line in from starting a point is not feasible since if it gets snagged while being pulled it's worthless. That is the whole basis for carrying the rope with you and feeding it out.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              That is a good point and that is why we are still testing it out and running through different scenarios before actually committing to it.

                              It isn't on the rig yet but we are testing it as a separate bundle that is connected to a discharge on the second in (or a wye at the door if it is a long lay).

                              At pressure the hose is pretty stiff but still very light so it negotiates obstacles well. The crew is spaced apart as well but still in voice to allow for faster searching (not bunched up) and decent hose management.
                              Due to the size and weight it is much less likely to get hung on stuff than an 1 3/4" and we bring those in all the time...

                              Comment

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