The following excerpt is Mark Pfeifer of Ronin Rescue during an interview with Lance Piatt of Rigging Lab Academy.
“So we reached out a year or so ago and started looking at confined space. There’s a lot of video on rope rescue, a lot of cool highline failure videos you can watch. There wasn’t a lot on confined space we found. We decided, you know, how do we do a confined space video? Well everybody wants to see rigging. And that’s how we’re going to start it, we’re going to start it with rigging. Then we kind of went, well the rigging’s dictated by the strategy and tactics. Well, the strategy and tactics are dictated by the atmospheric conditions and geography which we’re rigging.
So we ended up basically throwing the script down, starting again. And starting with why the atmosphere is so bad, and how that affects your decision making as the team leader, the incident commander, the rescue team leader on site. And how that atmosphere and that geography changes your strategies and tactics for confined space rescue in a way that rope rescue just does the happen.
You can always kind of deviate something here or push a line over there in rope rescue. It just doesn’t happen in confined space. If that’s a 24-inch diameter hole, it’s a 24-inch diameter hole. If it’s an 18-inch diameter home, it’s an 18. And we do in 24 may not work in 18. That’s going to dictate how this gets rigged. Which means your toolbox has to be bigger.
And so that’s where we backed up to. So we started with looking at those hazards in order to give that team leader and those team members that knowledge on why we’re rigging the way we are and we’re going down that path on that rescue scene. And that led us into the different types of rigging. The straight mechanical advantage into using controlled descent with inline mechanical advantage. Using artificial high directionals, and then using things like tension line to rig reaves or skate blocks to.
And these are all in the essence of saving time. These vessels, a lot of times it’s not like we can change up where we’re rigging. When we’re on these industrial sites, right to us or to the left of us might be some sort of ethyl methyl death. We’re stuck rigging where we’re rigging. And so we have to be more creative with our rigging in these scenarios. Not just in the high angle environment outside, but how we go inside.
Ultimately, this is about the patient, getting them to definitive medical care as fast as we can, as safely as we can with that balance of safety and speed, and the only way we’re going to do that is for people that are watching this, the up and comers, the old timers to go through, to push the envelope and to make us better in the future.”
- Strategy defines your long-term goals and how you’re planning to achieve them. In other words, your strategy gives you the path you need toward achieving your organization’s mission.
- Tactics are much more concrete and are often oriented toward smaller steps and shorter time frames along the way.
So I want to draw a quick parallel to “atmosphere being equal to leadership”. I have heard it said that “leadership is the air success or failure breathes”. So if atmospheric conditions and geography rule the scope of Strategy and Tactics, then in a broad brush application, it is “what we breathe and where we breathe it” that defines our planning and steps. Is this not the same for those in leadership and those we choose to listen to as well?
I know this last bit was sort of a bombshell to some and I am going to be following up on this later, but for now… simmer on this for time. Is your leadership or the leadership of those you follow conducive to proper function? Can you build strategy (long term) and tactics (steps) with your environment? Do you need “SAR or SCBA or filters” just to get through the day or is your team so solid that fresh natural “air” abounds.
Below is a trailer to our upcoming Confined Space Rescue Master Class in partnership with Ronin Safety and Rescue. Who deals with atmospheric conditions that affect planning and rigging?… Fire Departments, Industry, Search and Rescue, Cave Rescue just to name a few. This course is a must for administrators and technicians alike. Legacy building starts with vision first, and implementation passed on through knowledge and experience.
We have small adjustments still needing to be made so Mark and Kevin (Founders and Directors or Ronin Safety and Rescue) flew in last week to help with these tweaks. This project is simply amazing and a game changer for everyone.
Confined Space Rescue Master Class is most assuredly a must to have and well worth the extensions. As Mark said earlier, we realized we were on something big, so we scraped the original and rewrote the script… and we are glad we did.