Date of Incident
Climber and belayer were doing lead climbing for the session. Climber was climbing an easy grade for their level of climbing as it was the start of the session. The climber wanted to climb a 7B that day to advance their grade and going to be anticipating a lot of lead falls for that session.
The climber climbed the 6a without any issues to warm up and has reached the top of the route. The climber ensured that they were clipping all of the clips. When the climber reached the top of the route rather than clipping the anchors, the climber decided to take a lead fall approx 1m above the last clip. The climber has then fallen 9m to the floor escaping serious injury as the rope caught at the last second. The climber was sent home with bruised heels, ankles, and knees.
The belayer had been paying out too much slack at each of the clips and then not taking back in, then at the top the belayer anticipated the climber clipping the anchors and so paid out more which resulted in the climber falling further than necessary.
More encouragement for experienced climbers to take up refresher lessons on belaying and climbing to highlight any bad habits that might have been picked up since they have started. This will have highlighted to the belayer that they need to recheck the slack after every clip, and to better judge the amount of slack in the system. It would have also highlighted to the climber the importance of communication on the route and whether they will fall or clip.
Belaying failure or error
Rescue Services Involved?
8 May 2023 at 08:43:39
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All reports are self-submitted and have not been edited by the BMC in any way, so please keep an open mind regarding the lessons and causes of each incident or near-miss.