Doug Renwick wrote:
Improper equipment or improper use can contribute to increased accident
risk, to be sure! But you sound to me just like the person who refuses
to wear a seatbelt while driving, saying it might trap him in the car,
while totally ignoring what could happen if he has an accident without
the seatbelt. If you don't have proper safety equipment or don't know
how to use your equipment properly, don't climb! The safety record of
the tower maintenance industry is dismal, and it's getting the attention
of people who would just love to add tower climbing to the list of
regulated activities. If, one day, we hear that hams no longer can do
our own tower work due to regulations, we will have people like you to
blame for it! Get off the tower!
If this description of the fatal event is correct then one possibility
is that being belted-in in his decent may have contributed to his fall.
If he used both hands to unhook his positioning lanyard (reason unknown)
to get around the guy station, and lost his balance then that could
explain what happened. Yes if he had used a fall-arrest lanyard it
could have changed the outcome.
IMO if the use of 'safety' equipment increases your risk then it is not
doing the job. If the 'safety' equipment complicates, interferes,
tangles, etc. then it will increase the risk and be a hazard.
Don't waste your time emailing me about risk. Everyone takes a risk
when they put their first foot on the tower rung. Don't climb when you
are tired, out of physical condition, don't rush, focus on what you are
doing, if what you are about to do doesn't feel right - don't do it.
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