Creating Your Rope Rescue Equipment SOP

Written By: Lance Piatt

A systematic approach to rescue equipment selection, care and maintenance can help rescue teams be more effective in their work. By understanding the capabilities and limitations of different types of rescue equipment, rescue teams can choose the right tools for the job at hand. Additionally, proper care and maintenance of rescue equipment can prolong its lifespan and help ensure that it is ready to use when needed.

  • Appropriate equipment for intended use
  • Maintain rope and equipment
  • Remove unapproved equipment from use

A rescue organization should have standard operating procedures (SOPs) in place that list the roles and responsibilities of both the organization and of the responsible personnel. Equipment records should also be kept in order to ensure that all rescue equipment is up to date and properly maintained.

Appropriate knowledge is critical for ensuring successful rescue operations. Rescue personnel must be properly trained in rescue techniques and equipment use, and must be familiar with the specific procedures for their organization. In addition, rescue equipment must be regularly inspected and maintained to ensure that it is in good working condition. Rescue organizations should have a system in place for tracking rescue equipment and personnel, so that they can be quickly mobilized in the event of an emergency.

  • Equipment selection
  • Equipment inspection
  • Cleaning and decontamination
  • Guidelines and policies for repair
  • Storage
  • Retirement and disposition

Here are some of the details to be recorded and maintained for each item of life safety rope and rescue equipment in an equipment record or ledger.  This ensures that the team has the most up to date and accurate information when performing a rescue:

  • Manufacturer
  • Model
  • Serial Number
  • Date of Manufacture
  • Age/Expiration Date
  • Last service/test date
  • Next service/test date
  • User (individual or organization)
  • What and Why of the Inspection
  • What and Why of the Removal

Peace on your Days



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