The London Fire Brigade has a number of methods to rescue people from heights. Usually these involve ladders or aerial appliances, but sometimes these are not suitable and we use ropes. London has many tall structures, such as tower cranes, and deep excavations like trenches or tunnels. Occasionally the London Fire Brigade is called on to rescue people from these places and in certain cases the best way to carry out the rescue is by using ropes to raise or lower them.
Across London we have 14 Fire Rescue Units (FRU’s). Nine of these FRU’s have the equipment and training to carry out rope rescues. In addition to rope rescues our Fire Rescue Unit crews use their ropes to keep firefighters safe when they are working at height. The rope rescue teams train at fire stations on their drill towers, and at other venues, such as cranes on building sites.
We get about 50 incidents a year which involve our rope rescue teams.