Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Fast Rope

Fast roping is a technique for getting men out of a helicopter to the ground quickly. The rope/line is used something like a fireman's pole in that you use it for braking before you hit the bottom. The rope is not attached to you (photo right) and there's usually about ten feet between people in free-fall on the rope. That means, when you do hit the ground, you need to move fast or the next guy will land on top of you. 

Heavy gloves are used to create braking friction on the line. So as the ground is coming up to you, holding hard on the soft, large diameter rope is what keeps you from being squashed. 

The rotary wing aircraft in these photos are CH-43's.
The photo above shows a little razzle-dazzle, going off the ramp inverted (upside down) thence down the rope to the patiently waiting Earth below. And with the exception of the inverted stunt, the old thing we said as kids, "look Mom, no hands" holds true up to the point when you need to brake.


Opus #6 said...

Do you know the men in these pictures?

WoFat said...

No way. No. No, no, no, no.

LL said...


darlin said...

I'm with you WoFat, nope not a hope in in the world would I ever try that one! Scary stuff!

LL said...

There are two types of people in the world:



Training builds confidence, and flipping off the ramp of a CH-43 backwards merely proves to you that you can do it, keep your orientation, etc. So when you need to fast rope when people are shooting at you, the you KNOW you can get down the darned rope FAST and safe.

darlin said...

Thank you for clarifying that for me LL, I will remain untrained, and pray that nobody ever shoots at me when I am in an airplane, heck I will pray that nobody ever shoots me even when I'm not in an airplane!

LL said...

You Canadians do live life on the edge because you never know when a wolf or a bear will tear you limb from limb - but you view a simple gunshot wound as a big deal... go figure!

darlin said...

Bears and wolves do not live in the city, no worries here.

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