Showcasing its leadership in rope-access and work-at-height, Petzl concluded the 2018 RopeTrip International Challenge and Symposium in Germany on June 9, crowning its first ever winning team from North America. Every two years, the Petzl RopeTrip brings together leading professionals in the rope-access community for an event that showcases best practices, cutting-edge technique and industry camaraderie through friendly competition and educational seminars.
This year, Petzl brought together 40 teams made up of 120 rope access technicians from 19 countries, as well as 10 additional symposium presentations. The three-day event, held this year at Duisburg’s Landschaft Park outside of Dusseldorf, is Petzl’s fourth bi-annual RopeTrip event.
The years’ competition entailed four unique qualifying challenges such as the Water Bucket and the Coal Mine challenges, allowing rope access professionals to demonstrate both individual and team skills. It also included the Climb Up Race, a competition that tests a rope access technician’s speed, a favorite event for participants and spectators alike.
Each day included a Symposium series, with opportunities for attendees and competitors to share information and learn from field experts on topics such as responding to medical emergencies, challenges and solutions for risk and insurance, and common contributing factors of accidents in rope access.
Additionally, there were four expert trainers from Petzl who conducted daily workshops to share experience on topics from efficient hauling systems to the challenges inherent in the management of long-lengths of semi-static rope.
By day three, the qualifying rounds ended and the finalists were announced from Canada, France and two teams from Russia. The finalists competed in a full-team rescue challenge, where teams were required to rescue “live-victims” from a variety of compromised scenarios. In the end, the RAT - CANADA Team (Remote Access Technologies of ACUREN) was the first team to successfully return all of their rescuees to the ground, becoming the first North American winner in the history of the RopeTrip Competition. RAT - CANADA qualified to travel to Germany by winning the North American RopeTrip Series in February 2018.