West Valley Firefighters

Quarterly Newsletter

1st Quarter of 2012


Policy 2404: Life Safety Ropes, Harnesses, & Hardware

Policy 2404: Life Safety Ropes, Harnesses, & Hardware



YAKIMA, WA 98908

POLICY #                    2404



REVISED:                     02/10/09


REFERENCES:             WAC 296-305-02019


Ropes used to support the weight of members or other persons during rescue, fire fighting, other emergency operations, or during training evolutions shall be life safety rope.

1.0 Life safety rope used for rescue at fires, emergency incidents, or for training purposes, shall be permitted to be used if inspected before and after, each such use, in accordance with the manufacture’s instructions provided.

1.1 The rope has not been visually damaged by the exposure to heat, direct flame impingement, chemical exposure, or abrasion.

1.2 The rope has not been subject to any impact load.

1.3 The rope has not been exposed to chemical liquids, gases, solids, mists, or vapors of any materials, known to deteriorate rope.

1.4 If the rope used for rescue at fires, other emergency incidents, or for training, has been subject to 2.1, 2.2, 2.3, or fails the visual inspection, it shall be destroyed after such use.

1.5 If there is any question regarding the serviceability of the rope after consideration of the above, the safe course of action will be taken and the rope shall be placed out of service.

1.6 Records shall provide a history of each life safety and training rope. The minimum information to be reflected in the history of life safety and training ropes shall include: Date of manufacturer, organization serial number, use list to include inspectors name and space for comments.

1.7 Rope used for training evolutions shall be designated as training rope and shall be permitted to be reused if inspected before and after each use in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.

1.8 The destruction of rope means that it shall be removed from service and altered in some manner that it could not be mistakenly used as a life safety rope. This includes disposal or removal of labels and cutting into short lengths to be used for utility purposes.

1.9 Class I safety harnesses shall be used for fire fighter attachment to ladders and aerial devices.

1.10 Class II and Class III life safety harnesses shall be utilized for fall arrest and repelling operations.

2.0 Rescue ropes shall be padded when deployed over edges or rough surfaces.

3.0 Rope inspection shall be conducted by employees who have attended a 16 hour rope rescue training program. The inspection will be in accordance with rope inspection procedures, established and recommended, as adequate, by the rope manufacturer to assure rope is suitable for reuse.

4.0 All repairs to life safety harnesses shall be done by an authorized manufacture’s representative, or the manufacture.

5.0 Rope care:

5.1 Dry damp ropes prior to placing them back in the stuff bags.

5.2 Avoid grit or other debris from coming in contact with rope.

5.3 Remove knots as soon as possible.

5.4 Exposure to the sun’s UV radiation will damage the rope, keep exposure to a minimum.

5.5 If washing a rope is necessary, rinse it in water only. Using detergents is not recommended.

5.6 While handling a rope examine it for imperfections or abrasions.

5.7 Any rope that is suspect to be damaged should be immediately removed from service and forwarded to the Support Services Captain with an explanation.