American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Fall on Rock, Protection Failure, Inadequate Protection, Alberta, Rock Mountains, Banff Area, Sunshine Slabs

  • Accident Reports
  • Accident Year:
  • Publication Year: 1992

FALL ON ROCK, PROTECTION FAILURE, INADEQUATE PROTECTION

Alberta, Rocky Mountains, Banff Area, Sunshine Slabs

Sunshine Slabs is a short practice cliff just west of Banff. One summer day in 1991, a climber (30) was leading on steep, loose corners to the right of it when he slipped off. The victim fell 15 meters to the ground when a small tree used for protection was pulled out by the force of the fall. He suffered a spinal injury and head and knee lacerations. His companions had him immobilized on a scrap of plywood when Emergency

Medical Services Personnel arrived to help him. (Source: Banff National Park Warden Service)

Analysis

Trees provide very convenient protection placements, and large ones may be reliable, but smaller ones should be suspect. (Source: Orvel Miskiw, ACC Calgary Section)

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