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Another Arapalies Accident

5:45:51 PM
Tourist hurt in rock face fall
Wednesday, 30 March 2005. 14:10 (AEDT)
A Canadian tourist is in hospital with head injures after falling from a six metre rock face at Mt Arapalies.
The 24-year-old was climbing Death Row when he lost his footing and fell yesterday afternoon.
The climber has also suffered leg injuries and severe abrasions.
Senior Constable Kevin Hinge of Natimuk police says the man's injuries are not life threatening.

ABC Local News

9:34:47 PM
In case you're like me and didn't know, Death Row is a grade 18 climb on the Pharos.

11:26:57 PM
To clear up a few things, he did not fall off "Death Row", he did infact have a small altication on "Bird Man of Alcatraz". Good news is though, that he is in Horsham Hospital (well maybe that is not so good), and recovering after his first surgery. Bad news is, that he will unfortunatley have to go through several more operations this week, to put himself back together. By the way he is NOT a 'tourist', but in fact a friend and fellow climber, who just happens to be from Canada.

8:49:02 PM
what are the details of the fall shaggy? lack of/no pro or gear come out?
7:28:46 PM
Fell of the top of the layback, ripped 3 bits of gear, one may have been a technical failure rather than placement failure, 1 off the top jug, 1 at base of flake, one at start of traverse, hit the deck ... slightly more than 6 m. Hopefully he has learnt to place more gear and maybe drop 10 grades until he can place better gear. Wish people didn't have to learn these things the hard way though.
9:54:31 PM
thats so true, i started climbing when i was 5, now i'm 17, my dad taught me very well from the beggining taking it very slowly. i started just placing gear at the bottom of the cliff and he'd check it, and only led anything i was comfortable on with him next to me at first, and on climbs he knew could be protected easily, its a very slow process building up confidence, but it all makes it worthwhile. you have to take it easy and consolidate leading say grade 16, before moving onto grade 17/18's

1:05:33 AM
I find it amazing that three pieces pop on climbs with such good rock. Like many others I have fallen from the end of the layback on Birdman, a nice distance onto a good #3 cam. On my partner's lead attempt he placed a hex and #4 cam above my gear and fell aswell, from the same spot. The #4 cam pulled out and upon inspection it had a bent outer lobe, presumably from being loaded sideways. The hex took much effort to remove.

Perhaps if he hadn't placed that extra gear he would've topped out, but if you run it out on single bits of gear you're in for a big jolt if it goes. Who knows, too many variables.

9:42:41 PM
It doesn't suprise me at all. Some of the rock at Araps is so slick that sometimes it feels like even a cam will just slide right on out. Give me nice grippy granite any day thanks!!

11:31:25 AM
good old granite, where if it's a positive hold it'll probably flake off and where you get to leave lots of skin in the cracks.

9:09:09 PM
Yeah, sorry rich, been away, you know, climbing...
As Wendy said, had a technical failure of a cam, and yeah, he probably could have paced more gear, but as everyone else, apart from Wendy, would probaby appreciate, when you think you have placed a bomber cam, or wire, you sometimes run it out, especially at the crux, the last thing you expect to have is the peice failing technically. Look, he learnt his lesson, he got away frekin lucky, and I'm sure he probably will place more gear in the future. Maybe we can all learn from his misfortune, Gear, and even bolts (for all those sports w...) aren't immune from tech failures, a bomber placement doesn't necissarily mean bomber protection.
9:23:01 PM
Umm... dare I ask does anyone know any more on how he's doing? I sincerely hope that apart from all his 'lesson learning' that he's doing ok and can look forward to many more years on the rock. Fingers crossed for him anyway.

9:34:23 PM
Yeah, He's doing fine, just had his last surgery yesterday, to put his ankle back together, he'll be back on the rock within 6 months, he's got a great attitude, they just wont give him enough drugs in the hospital!

10:36:25 PM
On 7/04/2005 shaggy wrote:
>As Wendy said, had a technical failure of a cam

what sort of technical failure? the cam 'forgot' to open?

12:03:28 AM
Lobe distortion, cam inversion, and cam stop failure...Enough info for the critics????

12:37:04 AM
On 8/04/2005 shaggy wrote:
>Lobe distortion, cam inversion, and cam stop failure...Enough info for
>the critics????

sorry just curious to know what went wrong..

10:54:45 AM
I think any of us who use cams are always going to be interested in any failures (for whatever reason) that come to light.
It sounds like the cam self destructed due to not being up to the force applied to it.
This is sobering news. Any info on the brand and size of the unit?
Thanks for the feedback thus far shaggy & Wendy.

Phil Box
9:34:20 AM
From past inspections of placement failures of cams (note I did not say cam failure) it sounds like this cam walked during the fall. It may also have been placed far to open, in other words cams are really only effective from about half way shut to totally shut. They may be good from half way open to 3/4 open and from 3/4 open to fully open they mostly are prone to failure.

One of the best ways to see cams in action during loading is when you aid on them. Check the flex of the shafts out particularly on Aliens.

The failure mode when a cam walks whilst under a climber falling scenario is that the head of the cam may allow two lobes to invert. Grab say a HB Quad cam and rotate it past 90 degrees to see what I am talking about. Camalots by the very nature of their construction cannot do this due to the cam stops being part of the double axle system thus they are in my mind a much safer cam to use.

When a cam walks the lobes on one side of the axle may grab the rock whilst the lobes on the other side slide forward thus enabling those lobes to flick forward past 90 degrees of the axle rendering the cam ineffective to hold a load. It may be that one lobe flicked too far forward and the other lobe became loaded past what it could hold and was bent.Lotsa funny things happen during a shockload of a cam during a fall.

I`m almost to the stage of suggesting that critical cam placements should have long trad draws placed on them to prevent or minimise walking during a fall.

4:24:35 PM
>I`m almost to the stage of suggesting that critical cam placements should
>have long trad draws placed on them to prevent or minimise walking during
>a fall.

That is an excellent suggestion. I have gotten the habit of slinging cams or at a minimum using a 20cm draw (actually upgraded all of my draws to this length). It is amazing how much the ywalk around when clipped with a sport draw (past experience),

Great hypothesis on the placement failure, by the way. Very informative.

5:24:34 PM
I have also started slinging cams, especially when used in vertical cracks. I tend to find that in vertical cracks cams can walk out (rotate out) of cracks whereas in hroiznotals they tend to walk in towards the back of the crack.

Also in horizontals, the top and bottom edges of the cracks tend to keep the cam from jiggling about to much. Still not a bad idea slig these though, the extra fall distance is well worth it.
7:20:04 PM
As mentioned before, hexes are underrated IMHO ..
- Steve

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There are 24 messages in this topic.


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