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Re: [TowerTalk] 2 questions - one answer

Subject: Re: [TowerTalk] 2 questions - one answer
From: "Pat Barthelow" <>
Date: Fri, 01 Jun 2007 12:21:17 -0700
List-post: <>
Among other, very wise comments from Steve, someone who's been there, done 
that, Said:

>     BTW falling while using a lineman's belt  and lanyard around the tower 
>potentially fatal as you'll slip  thru the belt and it'll wind up at the
>bottom of your  ribcage, immobilizing your diaphragm and suffocating you. 
>Just a
>comment.  >Cheers, Steve     K7LXC TOWER TECH - >Professional tower 
>services for hams

I see the classic single climbing belt is being pushed out of use, for 
better, safer techniques and equpment.   I used the single strap belt for 
years in (cable TV) industry, decades ago.  Even went through training on 
Gaffing poles that had no steps.

You have not lived, until you are in your CATV climbing class, on a bare 
wooden  training pole, gaining confidence by gaffing (climbing spikes) 
eventually up to the, say 40ft level.  Instructor on the ground coaching 
your every move, and telling you your fear and inability to move a muscle up 
there is only a    mental issue.  (as in extreme interest in self 
preservation).  All in your head... it is really easy....

At that time, the technique was to have your heavy, hooked strap hanging 
with both ends on your rigiht side D-Ring while ascending.    Once at the 
top of the bare pole, with your gaffs solidly set and angled in  (your butt 
out) you removed your right hand from its death grip on the pole, and with  
with the left hand keeping your life in the balance, on the pole, you remove 
your right  hand, from the pole, usnapped one hook from the D ring, carried 
it around the pole, set your right hand, around the pole, handed the hook to 
your left hand, and the with your left hand, carried the strap, and snapped 
it to the left D-Ring..   (from 40 ft up, on two teeny spikes sticking into 
a very splintery wood pole).... gives me the willies just recalling it.

One thing we were trained to do was to wear the single belt much lower 
around our butt than a lot of folks do, and to cinch it up tight.  As I 
recall, if positioned properly and snug, it could not slide up around your 
hips, and hang you on your diaphragm, or armpits.  But I dont know 
now...Things have changed for the better.   What were acceptable 
risks/techniques in the past are now just not acceptable, and we are better 
off for it.

My other passion is also a risky activity.... Motorsports.  Look up on You 
Tube for laps with on board cameras, around Lemans.  In a similar way, 
safety standards have vastly improved for road raciing in modern times.    
To show how that has changed, look at a You tube Lap around LeMans of a 
racer of the 50s doing an on board Filmed lap for publicity in a D Jaguar.  
While he is at near racing speeds doing/filming the demo, there are 
bicyclists, walkers, people ON THE TRACK while he whizzes by.  Not much in 
the way of walls or barriers to the trees, driveways, rocks,  stumps, etc, 
that whizz by at 170 plus mph.

Of course, do a You tube search with Derek Bell, in the Porsche 962 at 380 
kph on the Mulsanne straight before they put chicanes in it.  Some (less) of 
the roadside trees, rocks, driveways are still there just off the roadway.

Sincerely, Pat Barthelow
Jamesburg Earth Station  Moon Bounce Team

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