One and a half days into a ladder course we we’re teaching we decided to shut up and let the students do their thing with minimal interference from us. We simply gave an objective, an over of the equipment cache and a few rules.
Objective: Vent the roof of a 3 story building.
· The TL can’t go above the 2nd floor window.
· All the tools must go to the roof.
· 1 95’ TL (Not allowed above 2nd floor window)
· 14’ &16’ straight ladder
· 28’ two section ladder.
· 35’ two section ladder
· 6’ halligan hook
· 100’ of utility rope
· 8# axe
One of the big points of the exercise was to work in an unusually large “double hop” or laddering one roof/ elevated area to then throw another ladder off of to reach the overall objective. Generally, a double hop is used from porch roof to the main roof of a two or three story wood frame and a straight ladder or 24’ at most will do the trick. In this case, a 28’ was needed.
Over the course of six hours, all the groups put their own spin on things. We saw ideas that we never would have come up with that we’re home runs.
One idea that was great in the “light bulb” phase but didn’t pan out in the execution phase was using the “dog leash clip” on the utility rope to secure and hoist a 28’ ladder. The group was on the right track with using the rope, the hardware not so much. The ladder made it a few feet off the ground and the hardware failed, the ladder slid back down to the ground without incident. With this, we took a second to regroup with everyone and go over a better option with just rope and no hardware. The group gave it a second shot, home run!
Hoisting a ladder is something we all had to do in probie school, if you haven’t done it sense here’s a step by step review:
1) A member drops a rope bag from above, after making sure everyone is clear.
2) A member on the ground ties a figure 8 on a bite with an oversized bite, using the rope that’s trailing from the bag. No need to waste time and pull the other 70+ feet out.
3) The ground member runs the bite on the underside of the ladder to be hoisted, down 1/3 of the length of the ladder.
4) The ground member pulls the bite up in between two runs back to the top of the ladder and over the ends as to encompass the sky and ground facing sides and both beams with the rope.
5) The ground member signals the member above to start hauling.
6) The ground member uses the remaining rope in the bag as a tag line if need be to avoid obstacles on the building face and maneuver around the cornice area if going to the roof.