2 LIFE SAFETY & UTILITY ROPE APPLICATIONS TS 6–1LIFE SAFETY & UTILITY ROPE APPLICATIONSLife SafetyUsed solely to support rescuers/victimsMust be synthetic, block creel, virgin fiberMay not be reused unless meets all reuse criteriaUtilityUsed for any but life safety applicationsMay be synthetic or natural fiberMay be reused
3 CRITERIA FOR REUSING LIFE SAFETY ROPE TS 6–2CRITERIA FOR REUSING LIFE SAFETY ROPEHas no visible damageHas never been exposed to heat, flame, or abrasionHas never been subjected to any impact loadHas never been exposed to harmful chemical liquids, solids, gases, mists, or vaporsPasses inspection before and after each use
4 HomeworkDistinguish between life safety and utility rope applications. Mark “A” for life safety applications or “B” for utility rope applications.1. __ Pulling someone from the water2. __ SCBA guide rope3. __ Tag line4. __ Securing backpack assembly to confined space rescuer's harness whenrescuer cannot enter space wearing standard SCBA5. __ Securing a victim in a Stokes basket6. __ Cordoning off an area7. __ Hanging a salvage cover to dry8. __ Hoisting a tool or piece of equipment9. __ Safety harness tie-in during confined space entry10. __ Securing a charged hose to a ladder11. __ Drying clothes12. __ Lowering a victim from a building during training exercise13. __ Rappelling14. __ Roping off an area15. __ Stabilizing a vehicle for extrication
5 ROPE TERMINOLOGY VS 6-1 Strand Fibers Yarns Sheath or Jacket Core Kern Mantle
6 ROPE CONSTRUCTION Laid (Twisted) Braided Braid-on-Braid VS 6-2ROPE CONSTRUCTIONLaid (Twisted)BraidedBraid-on-BraidStatic KernmantleDynamic Kernmantle
7 HomeworkMatch rope materials to their descriptions. Write the correct letters on the blanks.16. Strong, hard fiber from the abaca plant; type #1 best for rope and identified by a colored string twisted into the fibers; short, non-continuous strands provide poor tensile strength17. Synthetic rope with three to three and one-half times the tensile strength of manila, but may lose up to 15 percent of its strength when wet; stretches under load so is not suitable for vehicle stabilization or similar applications18. Synthetic fiber sometimes known as Dacron®; particularly suitable to high-strength, low-stretch applications such as vehicle stabilization; very susceptible to damage by alkalis19. Very lightweight synthetic rope used for water rescue because it absorbs no water and floats; difficult fiber to secure into solid knots and hitchesa. Manilab. Nylonc. Polyethylened. Polyester
8 HomeworkMatch rope materials to their descriptions. Write the correct letters on the blanks.20. Same synthetic fiber as that used in bulletproof vests; also known as Kevlar®; easily damaged by abrasion so must be sheathed in polyester or nylon; very difficult to knot21. Soft, pliable natural fiber; generally white or light colored; most susceptible to physical abrasion and damage of all natural fiber ropes22. New synthetic fiber with a high molecular weight; strongest of the synthetic rope fibers; also known as H. Spectra®23. Very lightweight fiber from same synthetic family as polypropylene; surface has slick, oily feel; can be manufactured in bright colors for good visibilitya. Gel spun polyethyleneb. Cottonc. Polypropylened. Aramid
9 NATURAL FIBER ROPE Types Used for many years TS 6–3NATURAL FIBER ROPETypesManilaSisalCottonUsed for many yearsIs no longer accepted for life safety applications
10 SYNTHETIC ROPE Types Preferable to natural fiber rope TS 6–4SYNTHETIC ROPETypesNylonPolypropylenePolyesterPolyethylenePreferable to natural fiber ropeExcellent resistance to mildew and rottingExcellent strengthAramidGel spun polyethylene (H. Spectra®)
11 DYNAMIC (HIGH STRETCH) ROPE TS 6–5DYNAMIC (HIGH STRETCH) ROPEUsed when long falls are a possibilityDesigned for high stretch without breakingNot considered practical for hauling applications
12 STATIC (LOW STRETCH) ROPE TS 6–6STATIC (LOW STRETCH) ROPEPreferred for rescues requiring raising and lowering heavy loadsDesigned for low stretch without breakingUsed for hauling, rescue, rappelling, and where no falls are likely to occur or only very short falls are possible
13 LAID (TWISTED) ROPE CONSTRUCTION TS 6–7LAID (TWISTED) ROPE CONSTRUCTIONConstructed by twisting yarns together to form strands; three strands twisted together make final ropeSusceptible to abrasion and other types of physical damage
14 BRAIDED ROPE CONSTRUCTION TS 6–8BRAIDED ROPE CONSTRUCTIONIs constructed of uniformly intertwined strandsReduces or eliminates twisting common to laid ropesIs subject to direct abrasion and damage
15 BRAID-ON-BRAID (DOUBLE BRAID) ROPE CONSTRUCTION TS 6–9BRAID-ON-BRAID (DOUBLE BRAID) ROPE CONSTRUCTIONIs constructed with both a braided core and a braided sheathIs very strongDoes not resist abrasion as well as kernmantle; sheath may slide along the inner core of the rope
16 KERNMANTLE ROPE CONSTRUCTION TS 6–10KERNMANTLE ROPE CONSTRUCTIONHas braided covering or sheath over main load-bearing strandsComes in both dynamic and static types
17 HomeworkSelect facts about rope construction. Write the correct letters on the blanks.23. What type of rope construction is illustrated above?a. Laid b. Braided c. Braid-on-braid d. Kernmantle24. Firefighter A says that static rope stretches very little.Firefighter B says that dynamic lines stretch more than static lines under weight and shock loads.Who is right?a. Firefighter A b. Firefighter B c. Both A and B d. Neither A nor B25. Why is static rope preferred for rescue work?a. Its elasticity absorbs the weight of a fallb. It has a low stretch factorc. It has a high stretch factord. It stretches more than dynamic rope under weight and shock loads
18 Homework26. What statement below is true in regard to laid (twisted) rope construction? a. The tightness of the lay (twist) determines the rope’s properties. b. Generally six strands are twisted together to make the final rope. c. Twisted rope is resistant to abrasion and other types of physical damage. d. Twisted rope is difficult to inspect. 27. What type of rope construction is illustrated below? a. Laid b. Braided c. Braid-on-braid d. Kernmantle 28. Firefighter A says that braided rope eliminates the twisting common to laid ropes. Firefighter B says that braided rope is constructed mostly of natural fibers though some are made from synthetic fibers. Who is right? a. Firefighter A b. Firefighter B c. Both A and B d. Neither A nor B
19 Homework29. What type of rope construction is illustrated below? a. Laid b. Braided c. Braid-on-braid d. Kernmantle 30. How many strands are there generally in a laid rope? a. Seven b. Five c. Three d. Two 31. Which of the following ropes possesses half its strength in its sheath and the other half in its core? a. Laid b. Braided c. Braid-on-braid d. Kernmantle
20 Homework32. Which type of rope construction is also called twisted construction? a. Kernmantle b. Braided c. Laid d. Woven 33. Which of the following ropes possesses three-quarters of its strength in its core and the remaining quarter in its sheath? a. Laid b. Braided c. Braid-on-braid d. Kernmantle 34. Which rope construction is most easily inspected, but also most susceptible to physical damage? a. Braided b. Laid
21 Homework35. Which of the following is the most commonly used rescue rope? a. Dynamic braid-on-braid b. Static braid-on-braid c. Dynamic kernmantle d. Static kernmantle 36. What type of rope construction is illustrated below? a. Laid c. Braid-on-braid b. Braided d. Kernmantle
22 ROPE CARE & MAINTENANCE TS 6–11ROPE CARE & MAINTENANCENumber or otherwise identify all ropes.Inspect after each use.Make periodic inspections.Use approved inspection methods.Immediately red-label rope damaged on scene.Keep a rope logbook.Remove used life safety rope from service per manufacturer’s criteria.
23 REASONS TO REMOVE ROPE FROM SERVICE TS 6–12REASONS TO REMOVE ROPE FROM SERVICEExcessive sheath wearSeverely shock loadedOverloadedChemically contaminatedOldLacks uniform diameterLacks uniform textureDoes not meet manufacturer’s criteria for reuse as life safety rope
24 GUIDELINES FOR INSPECTING ROPE TS 6–13GUIDELINES FOR INSPECTING ROPEInspect visually and tactilely after each use.Remove damaged rope from service.Inspect for flaws and damage specific to rope type.
25 INSPECTING LAID ROPE Look for . . . TS 6–14INSPECTING LAID ROPELook for . . .Soft, crusty, stiff or brittle spotsCutsNicksAbrasionsInternal mildew
26 INSPECTING BRAIDED ROPE TS 6–15INSPECTING BRAIDED ROPELook for . . .Heat searsNicksCutsExcess or unusual fuzziness
27 INSPECTING BRAID-ON-BRAID ROPE TS 6–16INSPECTING BRAID-ON-BRAID ROPELook for . . .Heat searsNicksCutsLumps that indicate core damageSliding sheath
28 INSPECTING KERNMANTLE ROPE TS 6–17INSPECTING KERNMANTLE ROPELook for . . .LumpsDepressionsSoft spotsIrregularities in shape or weaveFoul smellsDiscolorationRoughnessAbrasionsFuzziness
29 MAINTAINING A ROPE LOGBOOK TS 6–18MAINTAINING A ROPE LOGBOOKStart record with purchase of each piece of rescue rope.Keep track of each use and the inspection/ maintenance records of the rope.Keep log in waterproof envelope.eThe rope log is usually placed in a pocket sewn on the side of the rope’s storage bag.
30 CLEANING NATURAL FIBER ROPES TS 6–19CLEANING NATURAL FIBER ROPESDo not use water; ropes cannot be cleaned effectively.Wipe or gently brush to remove as much dirt and grit as possible.
31 CLEANING SYNTHETIC ROPE BY HAND TS 6–20CLEANING SYNTHETIC ROPE BY HANDUse cool water and mild soap (no detergents, bleaches, or solvent-based cleaners).Wipe with damp cloth that has been dipped in cool soapy water and then wrung out, or scrub gently with brush.Rinse thoroughly.Dry out of direct sunlight.
32 CLEANING SYNTHETIC ROPE IN ROPE WASHER TS 6–21CLEANING SYNTHETIC ROPE IN ROPE WASHERUse cool water.Feed through washer to remove larger particles of dirt.Remove stubborn dirt by hand with cloth or scrub brush.Dry thoroughly out of direct sunlight.
33 CLEANING SYNTHETIC ROPE IN CLOTHES WASHING MACHINE TS 6–22CLEANING SYNTHETIC ROPE IN CLOTHES WASHING MACHINEUse a front-loading, tumbling-type machine without a plastic window.Place rope in cloth bag in bird's-nest coil.Wash and rinse in cool water for recommended period of time.Use mild soaps (no detergents, bleaches, or solvent-based cleaners), and follow mfgr.’s directions.Dry thoroughly out of direct sunlight.Contact the rope mfg. for special cleaning problems.
34 ROPE DRYING METHODS Spread out on a hose rack out of sunlight TS 6–23ROPE DRYING METHODSSpread out on a hose rack out of sunlightSuspended in a hose towerLoosely coiled in a hose dryer
35 LIFE SAFETY ROPE STORAGE TS 6–24LIFE SAFETY ROPE STORAGEIn clean, dry spaces that have adequate ventilationCoiledIn bagBest for kernmantle rope and other life safety ropeAllows easy carrying; keeps dirt and grime from rope
38 HomeworkSelect facts about rope cleaning and storage. Write the correct letters on the blanks.37. How should natural fiber ropes be cleaned?a. In cool water with a brushb. By wiping or gently brushingc. By coiling in a cloth bag and washing in a clothes washing machined. By feeding through a rope washer38. Which of the following is not an approved method of drying rope?a. Air dryingb. Drying in a hose tower or on hose racksc. Drying in a clothes dryerd. Looping over clothesline and drying in the sun39. What water temperature should be selected when using a clothes washer to clean rope?a. Warm b. Hot c. Cold d. Any of the above
39 Homework40. What type of machine should be used for washing ropes in a clothes washing machine?a. Front-loading b. Commercial c. Top-loading d. Heavy-duty41. What type of cleaning agent should be used for cleaning rope?a. Bleach b. Solvent-based cleanerc. Soap d. Detergent42. What should the water temperature be for cleaning a rope with a rope washer?a. Warm b. Coldc Hot d. Any of the above
40 GENERAL INFORMATION ABOUT KNOTS The ability to tie knots is a vital part of fire and rescue operations.Synthetic rope material has changed methods of selecting and tying knots:Manila and other natural fiber ropes are no longer considered safe for life safety use.Synthetic rope is slick and may slide under load, so it requires an overhand or half hitch safety knot on the working end.The bends in knots weaken rope: outside fibers are stretched; inside fibers are bent or crushed.
41 DESIRABLE KNOT ELEMENTS Easy to tieEasy to identifyEasy to untieSecure under load (not subject to slippage)Tied with few abrupt bendsStrong enough for required job
42 ELEMENTS OF A KNOT I Underhand Loop Bight Loop Round Turn Overhand VS 6-5ELEMENTS OF A KNOT IUnderhandLoopBightLoopRoundTurnOverhandLoop
43 VS 6-6ELEMENTS OF A KNOT IIWorking EndStanding PartRunning End
44 KNOT TERMS Working end — Used for forming knot TS 6–27KNOT TERMSWorking end — Used for forming knotStanding part — Between working and running endsRunning end — Used to hoist, pull, belay, etc.Bight — Loop that does not cross over itselfLoop — Side of bight crossed over or under standing partRound turn — End of rope continued around top of loop until standing lengths are parallel
45 PRIMARY KNOT APPLICATIONS TS 6–28aPRIMARY KNOT APPLICATIONSOverhand knotA foundation knot for beginning other knotsA safety knot or backup to secure other knots (particularly those of synthetic rope) to prevent the working end from slipping back through the knot and causing it to failHalf hitchHoisting toolsStabilizing tall objects
46 PRIMARY KNOT APPLICATIONS (cont.) TS 6–28bPRIMARY KNOT APPLICATIONS (cont.)Bowline — Various utility and life safety (rope rescue harness) applicationsClove hitchAttaching ropes to objectsHoisting (with overhand knot)Figure-eight — Foundation knot for other knots in familyFigure-eight follow through — Joining ropes of equal diameters
47 PRIMARY KNOT APPLICATIONS (cont.) TS 6–28cPRIMARY KNOT APPLICATIONS (cont.)Figure-eight on a bight — Securing a loop in middle or end of a rope for a safety line, safety harness, litter and rescue equipment, anchor linesDouble-loop figure-eight — Constructing a rope rescue harnessBecket bend (sheet bend)Joining ropes of unequal diameterJoining rope to chain
52 CLOVE HITCH AROUND OBJECT VS 6-10CLOVE HITCH AROUND OBJECT123
53 CLOVE HITCH Is easily formed of two half hitches TS 6–30CLOVE HITCHIs easily formed of two half hitchesMay be used with overhand safety knot for hoisting tools and equipmentMay be formed anywhere on the ropeWithstands pull in either direction without slipping, when properly tied
55 FIGURE-EIGHT FOLLOW THROUGH VS 6-12FIGURE-EIGHT FOLLOW THROUGH132
56 FIGURE-EIGHT FOLLOW THROUGH AROUND OBJECT VS 6-13FIGURE-EIGHT FOLLOW THROUGH AROUND OBJECT1234
57 FIRGURE-EIGHT ON A BIGHT VS 6-14FIRGURE-EIGHT ON A BIGHT123
58 DOUBLE-LOOP FIGURE-EIGHT VS 6-15DOUBLE-LOOP FIGURE-EIGHT1234
59 TS 6–31FIGURE-EIGHT KNOTHas replaced the bowline since the introduction of synthetic ropeIs not as likely as the bowline to damage the ropeIs stronger than the bowlineIs an easy knot to tie, untie, inspect, and keep neat
60 BECKET BEND OR SHEET BEND VS 6-16BECKET BEND OR SHEET BEND1234
61 BECKET BEND (SHEET BEND) TS 6–32BECKET BEND (SHEET BEND)Is not likely to slip when the rope is wetIs dependable and useful for fire service utility applications
62 VS 6-5Homework184.108.40.206.45.a. Bight b. Loop c. Overhand Loop d. Round Turn e. Underhand Loop
64 HomeworkMatch knots to their primary applications. Write the correct letters on the blanks.51. __ Joining ropes of unequal diameters, joining rope to chain52. __ Joining ropes of equal diameters53. __ Securing a loop in a rope for a safety line, safety harness, litter and rescue equipment, anchor lines54. __ Foundation knot for other knots in family55. __ Safety backupa. Overhand knotb. Figure-eightc. Becket bend or sheet bendd. Figure-eight on a bighte. Figure-eight follow through
65 Homework 56. Attaching ropes to objects; hoisting (with overhand knot) 57. Forming a loop that will not constrict the object it is placed around58. Constructing rope rescue harnesses when webbing harness is unavailable59. Hoisting tools; stabilizing tall objectsa. Bowlineb. Clove hitchc. Half hitchd. Double-loop figure-eight
66 SAFETY CONSIDERATIONS BEFORE HOISTING TS 6–33SAFETY CONSIDERATIONS BEFORE HOISTINGPlan carefully, and complete all preparations.Ensure solid footing.Choose an area clear of electrical hazards if possible.Know that pressurized cylinders such as SCBA bottles and fire extinguishers should NOT be hoisted.
67 SAFETY CONSIDERATIONS DURING HOISTING TS 6–34aSAFETY CONSIDERATIONS DURING HOISTINGUse hand-over-hand method to control rope.Use edge rollers to protect rope pulled over sharp edges.Work in teams when working from heights.Look to ensure all personnel are clear of hoisting area.Use extreme caution if you must work near electrical hazards.
68 SAFETY CONSIDERATIONS DURING HOISTING (cont.) TS 6–34bSAFETY CONSIDERATIONS DURING HOISTING (cont.)Secure nozzle handle on charged lines to prevent accidental discharge.Use a tag line as necessary to prevent equipment from contacting building or other objects.Secure knots with overhand safety knots as appropriate.
70 HOISTING A LADDER Use bowline or figure-eight on a bight. TS 6–35HOISTING A LADDERUse bowline or figure-eight on a bight.Place knot through two rungs of ladder about one-third down from top.Place loop over top of ladder.