Been very busy

Sorry about the lack of activity over the past couple of days. I have always said that I will put up posts as and when is practical, and I seem to be into a phase of frantic activity – once again. Talk about a flat learning curve.

The past couple of months have seen two major climbing events – ITCC and ETCC, and any number of smaller events besides. It seems like its a continuation of early morning starts, getting back late, chucking gear out of the car and re-loading for the next day.

Having said that, I really enjoyed this week, Mon and Tue were two days with 120 forestry workers for the St. Gallen Forestry Commission, which was very interesting. The aim of the event was to help them clarify how to work in line with SUVA’s (Swiss Health and Safety authority) Best Practice guidelines for work at height. Not the most unambiguous document around that leaves a lot of blanks that need to be filled. We were just above Herisau and the landscape was rather stunning.

Then Wed and Thu were two days of basic level one training with three instructors and a group of twelve people, amongst whom were three women, which always makes for a pleasant change, as often as not, these arb events tend to be XY only. That course in Herisau? 120 people? Guess what, guys ONLY. Does my head a bit, actually. Anyway, the level one course was good as it felt that there was not one person on it who would really do better not to try to do any work at height. This is by far not always the case, but this time it worked out that way – which makes your life as an instructor considerably easer.

One topic we discussed in-depth in Herisau, where I was talking about planning for emergency and aerial rescue, was the level of protection that a steel-core lanyard actually offers – not much. Dwayne Neustaeter and the crew @ Arboriculture Canada offer a graphic illustration of this…

Off to Slovakia in just a moment for a workshop Sat and Sun… pics and stories to follow.

Next week is Hamburg… *gasp*