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Jarred_Jackman

Death at the Coulee

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Well, I guess my sig decided not to show up on my last post so here is the quote anyhoo:

 

"...the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles."-Jack Kerouac

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Hi!

 

I have followed this thread for some time now. It's been intresting to hear what happend, you've done a great job erden! Hopfully we all can learn someting from this! Göran was a great roll-model to me and has inspired me a lot.

 

There have not been any new postings for some time now, so I wonder if the discussion has moved some where else or if it just has slowed down. Looking forward to the final accidentreport.

 

Now I will take a while to figure out what Göran-size trip I'm going to make to honour his memory! [Wink]

 

My condolences to his family and friends.

 

/ Mathias

 

P.s. I think that a Memorial Fund (to reward achievements over the usual) might be a good idea!

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quote:

Originally posted by dreaming_tree:

There have not been any new postings for some time now, so I wonder if the discussion has moved some where else or if it just has slowed down. Looking forward to the final accidentreport.

Hi Mathias;

 

We are still here, will be here, we are not moving anywhere else. Simply, life and responsibilities caught up with me and I could not finish the report.

 

I have to go to Air Guitar and try to find a few more pieces of information soon, then update the info that I have based on the input here. I have gathered a bunch of digital photos with the help of my friend Steve Nagode, and I will include those as well. Once the document is done, before release, I want some outdoor industry peers to look over it for technical accuracy. Following that, Göran's father will receive a copy of it.

 

Only after that, and when we are satisfied, will the preliminary report go public. There is a good chance, we would want an independent lab help with the investigation, so the next step will be up to Göran's father.

 

quote:

Now I will take a while to figure out what Göran-size trip I'm going to make to honour his memory!
[Wink]

Think big!!! [rockband]

 

quote:

I think that a Memorial Fund (to reward achievements over the usual) might be a good idea!

and why not! [Cool]

 

Erden.

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Nice to here you're still here! [Wink]

 

I understand that the report will take a while, and that it must be very difficult for you doing all this after the accident. You are doing a great job!!! [rockband]

Hope you didn't think I was pushy to hurry you up... that was not my intention.

 

Thank you for sharing all your information here!

 

/ Mathias

 

[ 10-16-2002, 04:34 AM: Message edited by: dreaming_tree ]

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The Petzl Meteor helmet has 3 main components:

a strap to keep it optimally positioned, foam to absorb impact, a light shell.

 

The outer shell is important, it is NOT for decorative purposes. A lesser funtion of this shell is durability, the foam would not sustain much incidental bump and ding without compressing and goughing.

 

But the most important function of the shell is to provide integrity for secondary impacts [and to slightly increase overal strength].

 

The Meteor was produced many many years after helmet technology had designed and tested helmets for bicyclists post 'hard-shell' era, most notably associated with the Bell V1-Pro [fully black thick hard plastic shell over a foam interior].

 

The next generation of helmets after the 'hard shell' era developed the 'micro-shell' design. Some micro-shell designs used a lycra/mesh covering, others used a very thin plastic cover. Ultimately the lycra/mesh covers were dropped in favor of a thin pastic cover.

 

The micro-shell is NECESSARY on cycle helmets as well as climbing helmets because without it the foam would collapse and disintegrate immediately after the initial impact. The micro-shell assits the foam in holding it together for secondary impacts during the same accident [and for cyclists its slick surface prevents lateral/anterior/posterior neck flexion due to high friction of foam directly on pavement].

 

The Petzl Meteor is an excellent choice for sport routes at a crag.

 

Where rockfall is present or generally wider variety of head hazards is present, a hard shell climbing helmet may be a better choice.

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This is my first posting on this site. I was shocked and saddened by the news of Goran’s death. As someone involved in risk management in the climbing industry for the last twelve years I am also very concerned about the circumstances of this accident.

 

Last year while attending the new opening of a store owned by a major outdoor recreation retailer, I noticed that the majority of the ropes behind the climbing gear counter were static. When I asked the employee who was working in the climbing department whether he understood the difference between static and dynamic ropes, he told me that he did not. I phoned the climbing gear buyer for the chain and he told me that in fact some of their stores sold more static than dynamic ropes. This seemed bizarre in light of the fact that none of this chain’s stores carries any other specific rescue, aid, caving or even bolting gear. Do all their customers know what they are buying????

 

Although this may not be the final answer, I find it difficult to conceive of any way four pieces of gear can have been so badly damaged (especially the Camalots), as a result of Goran’s fall, if the rope were dynamic.

 

The argument has been made here that no experienced climber could tie into a static rope by accident because they are so easily identifiable. If this is true, then why is it that no one involved in the aftermath of this accident can seem to remember if the rope had a single (identifying a static rope) or multiple, colored strands (dynamic) incorporated into it’s sheath? I do not mean any disrespect here I am only trying to point out that an obvious explanation needs to be seriously looked at.

 

Paul and the sheriff apparently have chunks of the rope in their possession. Paul promised to get back to us concerning the identity of the rope type:

 

“Mitch, I seen the rope but I can't remember which it was. My parner is down in yos. climbing and won't be back til monday. Erden the rope was cut by the rescuers before they took him away. As soon as he gets back I will take a more careful look at it.”

 

I’m not clear how the “parner in yos” is related to viewing the rope but two Mondays have passed since Paul’s posting. He has a vital piece of evidence in his possession he owes it to the community to get back to us as he promised.

 

If it turns out that Goran was killed because he was unknowing using a static rope for leading then we will have some heavy ammunition to do something about the uninformed sale of static ropes. I do have some pull in the industry.

 

I have been waiting for an answer to this question for three weeks now. All it would take is for someone to take a proper look at a piece of the rope. Will someone down there please, please have a look? We do need to know sooner rather than later because it may save lives.

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What kind of store was this? I'm wondering why static ropes are a profitable business at any rec. climbing store. Do they have a use of which I unaware? Are they being sold at REI or the like these days, and if so, what rescue agency buys their line at places like that? The two I have been involved with get wholesale and I would assume most do the same considering how quickly they work through static line. Sorry if I am asking an obvious question, I just have not come across a use for it in my rec. climbing before.

 

-Iain

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quote:

Originally posted by iain:

I'm wondering why static ropes are a profitable business at any rec. climbing store. Do they have a use of which I unaware? Are they being sold at REI or the like these days, and if so, what rescue agency buys their line at places like that?

We sell a fair chunk of it every summer to big wallers, photogs and the like for fixed lines and haul lines. MEC sells it too.

 

Oh yeah, guides too for rigging ropes courses.

 

[ 10-23-2002, 09:43 AM: Message edited by: snoboy ]

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thanks, I thought it would have some big wall applications for jugging and stuff. just surprised it's worth the rec. company's time to stock it.

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I have seen static ropes packaged in 50 m to 60 m lengths at climbing stores just like dynamic ropes. I have also seen a display rack where they were mixed in with the dynamic ropes. If you didn't read the labels or look carefully at the sheath you would not know.

 

I managed a climbing gym for 8 years and since we had some lead routes, I never allowed any static rope on the premises even for maintainance work. It gave me one less thing to worry about on my days off.

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quote:

Originally posted by Eduard:

If it turns out that Goran was killed because he was unknowing using a static rope for leading then we will have some heavy ammunition to do something about the uninformed sale of static ropes. I do have some pull in the industry.


WTF? I think you need to relax, Eddie. Without sounding callous, we as climbers are responsible to know our gear. Have "heavy ammunition" against who? [hell no]

 

Greg W

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Yeah, our riggers get their personal hand lines from outdoor retailers too. I wouldn't even know where else to buy one, frankly.

 

[ 10-23-2002, 10:18 AM: Message edited by: allison ]

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The evidence room has most of the rope. I have been overwhelmed, and I am leaving for Sweden to attend Göran's services. I return on Nov 12th. Only after that can I carry on with the accident investigation and take further action.

 

I have requested that the Evidence Room at the Grant County Sheriff's Office keep the evidence through November. This will keep the evidence "untainted" in case we need to follow up with an investigation by a certified independent lab, especially of the carabiner that broke.

 

So, let's calm down about Göran's rope, and all we have to say to save other people's lives is "DO NOT LEAD WITH A STATIC ROPE." Period.

 

And if you (Eduard) want to make sure shops sell static ropes in a different manner than dynamic ones, by all means, start the work toward that. No one is stopping anyone from taking action. I would applaud that as a corollary to the lessons learned, and it would make climbing safer overall.

 

In fact, today I will propose at REI that we create a separate display for static ropes so no one is ever confused.

 

Erden.

 

BTW: I see that new posters are getting sloppy with the spelling of Göran's name. Please correct for the umlauts. Cut and paste works just fine. THX.

 

[ 10-23-2002, 12:05 PM: Message edited by: erden ]

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Chill out Greg. I’m by no means advocating that climbing retail be regulated like SCUBA diving retail. However, when it comes to the point that someone working behind a climbing gear counter may know less than the 15 year old kid who just took a beginner course and is now buying stuff there, then perhaps the industry needs a wake up call. And maybe certain standards of voluntary self-regulation are in order.

 

Thousands of young people are being introduced to our sport every year. They deserve to receive correct information and advice when they are purchasing gear. I am not saying that gear retailers should fulfill the role of instructors, but they should know the difference between a static and dynamic rope, for God's sake.

 

I know that there are lots of competent people working behind gear counters, but I have seen some who don't have a clue. I feel,as a professional instructor, that I have a responsibility to the kids I have introduced to climbing. That is why I am pushing on the retail industry for a better standard of staff training.

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Erden,

 

I hope your arm is healing quickly, and that you are back climbing soon.

 

I haven't seen anything on how you were attached to the rock. Could this be understood as your actually NOT being attached to anything else than the rope brake? Can you confirm?

 

Take care

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quote:

Originally posted by Dr.Nil:

I hope your arm is healing quickly, and that you are back climbing soon.

My arm needs to be seen by a specialist. Now that the swelling has gone, and the pain has diminished, I was able to flex it to see that there is a significant notch in the triceps muscle closer to the armpit where the rope ran. Above and below the notch is a lump of flesh that suggests perhaps the muscle tore partially and retracted, perhaps it is an illusion to me (?). It is aching when I load it, and it is not 100% in strength. A doc should see the arm after my return from Sweden...

 

quote:

I haven't seen anything on how you were attached to the rock. Could this be understood as your actually NOT being attached to anything else than the rope brake? Can you confirm?

I was not attached to the rock. I was standing on the ledge. I trusted the stopper that Göran had placed 6-8 feet above me, which popped by the way. Had Göran's fall continued beyond the trail, and had the #2 TCU not held, I probably would have been pulled off the ledge.

 

That I was not tied in perhaps reduced the loads on the top pieces, but I do not recall being pulled up significantly.

 

Erden.

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I have a question for Erden. Whos gear was it--yours or his or somebody elses? It seems you should have known what kind of rope it was if it did belong to you--Ive been told that at least one of the peices that was recovered had your name on it--so the question is whos gear was it. Like someone else said--if your going to climb you should know the gear that you are climbing with-- [MR T]

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Erden, your description of the appearance and function of your arm is very consistent with a rupture of one of the muscle bellies of the tricep. The ruptured portion retracts and forms an obvious lump under the skin, which is not usually tender to touch. The specific movement aided by that muscle tends to be weaker, but not absent, because accessory muscles remain functional (or in the case of the triceps, the other two heads of it are still functional). The prognosis for return to full function is highly dependent on how soon you get treatment. If the muscle needs to be surgically reattached, this has a much greater chance of success if it happens soon . I know you're headed to Sweden soon, but if you have any spare time at all, get yourself to an orthopedic surgeon. PM me if you want some names.

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Erden, and friends:

 

As we can see from your postings, you are very experienced and knowledgeable climbers. You have done an outstanding job explaining to everyone what happened during the accident, and patiently made yourself available to everyone who wants to ask questions.

 

Nevertheless, very humbly I would like to ask you to refrain from testing equipment yourselves, but instead please restrict yourselves to documenting any and all data you remember, or can find, pertinent to the accident. I have no doubts about the qualifications of you, your friends at REI, or others who have offered to help in this forum, but I would like to emphasize the importance of consulting a neutral, accredited organization for any testing, which may cause irreversible changes in the equipment.

 

Please don't be offended, but such testing does need to be meticulously planned, and executed under laboratory conditions, by an objective party. For advice on how to proceed, I would suggest that you please contact the AAC Safety Commission (John E. Williamson) and the UIAA Safety Commission representative in the US (Helmut Microys), who is also an AAC delegate. I don't have their current contact info, but you can surely obtain it through the AAC, by phone 303.384.0110 or fax 303.384.0111 (8 a.m.-5 p.m. MST).

 

Again, a sincere thanks for your efforts, and please continue to be careful.

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quote:

Originally posted by Dr.Nil:

I would like to emphasize the importance of consulting a neutral, accredited organization for any testing, which may cause irreversible changes in the equipment.

 

Please don't be offended, but such testing does need to be meticulously planned, and executed under laboratory conditions, by an objective party.

No offence. Great point. Steve Nagode and I agree. We are not thinking any differently. Legally, we understand that we would not be recognized, and with my involvement, there would be perceived bias in any findings.

 

Just that with all the efforts in the aftermath of the accident, priorities have shifted. We have asked the evidence room at Grant County Sheriff's Office to hang on to the pieces through November, so that we can get our act together. This will ensure that the rope, and the hinged section of the biner will remain "untainted."

 

The nose section of the same biner is with me, and we only did a standard hardness test on it, which involves sinking a point into it with a known load and measuring the depth of the indentation mark that it leaves behind. That is all that has been done, and the marks are very small. We were careful to maintain the fracture surface as we found it, as that will yield many clues on the nature of the fracture.

 

quote:

For advice on how to proceed, I would suggest that you please contact the AAC Safety Commission (John E. Williamson) and the UIAA Safety Commission representative in the US (Helmut Microys), who is also an AAC delegate. I don't have their current contact info, but you can surely obtain it through the AAC, by phone 303.384.0110 or fax 303.384.0111 (8 a.m.-5 p.m. MST).

 

Again, a sincere thanks for your efforts, and please continue to be careful.

Valuable input again on the contact info. We may as well get in touch with them.

 

I am working with Steve Nagode along those lines as well, and we have identified EN Certified Labs in Europe who can do the complete investigation for us on the biner especially. We have to clear that the batch from which that biner came, as well as the individual biner itself were up to standards.

 

The lab that we intend to use is one that is in England, so that we will not have any language barriers in any report that they may produce. We would be willing to make public that report as well, I think.

 

Erden.

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quote:

Originally posted by Pencil Pusher:

Insofar as "objectivity" and "untainted" are concerned, consider the chain of custody.

got your PM; now that I know what you mean by the chain of custody, I agree that the Sheriff's Office should submit the pieces to the lab -- if that is what is decided in the end.

 

I am glad we are thinking the same way - I just did not know the expression for this. Simply put, the sheriff recovered the evidence, they retained the evidence, from them it should go to the lab without anyone else getting their hands on the evidence.

 

Erden.

 

[ 10-24-2002, 03:52 PM: Message edited by: erden ]

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quote:

Originally posted by Bad[lasma:

I have a question for Erden. Whos gear was it--yours or his or somebody elses? It seems you should have known what kind of rope it was if it did belong to you--Ive been told that at least one of the peices that was recovered had your name on it--so the question is whos gear was it. Like someone else said--if your going to climb you should know the gear that you are climbing with--
[MR T]

Rope and quickdraws belonged to Göran. The rest of the hardware was mine.

 

Erden.

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