Life is fragile.

Once again this was driven home to me after a strenuous day of making sure people were behaving in a safe fashion and not inadvertently doing anything dangerous during a level 2 training course, when upon arriving home I received some very bad news: A friend had a very serious accident on a building site yesterday when a dumper truck he was driving broke through the roof they were working on – resulting in a seven meter fall.

This is the kind of thing that could so easily kill you. In the blink of an eye.

Luckily here this was not the case, he survived, albeit seriously injured.

All it takes is that one element you are not anticipating or which catches you unaware: a structurally weakened beam, a defect on a limb, a suspended dead piece of canopy, a live wire you thought was isolated, a moment of inattention. Ultimately, it does not matter whether you are top of your game, world-champion tree climber or whatever – or the farmer from the next village or working for a facility management company. Okay, your level of competence may have a degree of influence on the odds, yet no one is safe from falling prey to bad luck, a bad call or simply an oversight.

There is something numbing, raw and frightening about the helplessness you experience when things like this happen to someone in your immediate surroundings. Not something I will ever get used to or am prepared to get used to.

This one goes out to Roman, heal fast and well.

Be safe – and mindful – out there.



Really chuffed to see a number of projects we have been working on finally being shown in public at the DMM booth at the A+A work safety show in Dusseldorf!

The Hitch Climber pulley was due an up-date. I cannot help but feel very attached to this plucky little pulley, as it was one of the first treemagineers products back in 2006, so I am very pleased with this face lift. But of course it is more than mere cosmetics: you can now attach textiles into the rounded holes, the flaring on the fairleads are finally the way we always wanted them to be, the whole thing is beefed up and at an MBS of 44 kN it is not exaggeration to call it pretty sturdy. It also boasts an updated axle with high-efficiency roller bearings… not to mention the becket version!

Then the PerfectO locking carabiners… if you love the Ultra Os (like I do), yet are concerned about build height or length of an assembly, these will make you very happy. They share key features of the Ultra O, symmetrical shape, reversibility solid breaking strength, a choice of three locking mechanisms… yet boast 15mm less length! Happy days.

The Offya trolley system offers loads of variations for rigging highlines. This has evolved again since we demoed its use at the Climbers’ Forum in April, looking absolutely stunning now. Combined with the Deviant attachment/ anchor point this will be a great tool for that one specific rigging job which would otherwise have been a nightmare.

Chris, Elliot and the team at DMM have done fantastic work on all of this kit, a big thank you to all of them for providing us with this fantastic gear to play with at work…