Accident Report

2017 03 24 GE Fatal Accident Report

(compiled by Jef Reumaux, Manager at the Gibbon Experience)

Location: Gibbon Experience, zipline steel cable No 4.

On March 24th, 11 a.m., the members of a group of 10 people (8 guests and 2 guides) engaged one after another southwards onto the 300m long No 4 zipline cable.

At the same time, a GE technician was standing on the southern end of returning cable No 4R – located below cable No 4 – across the valley conducting some maintenance work (bamboo clearing). Normally, vertical clearance between cables 4 and 4R at the intersection point is of approximately 6 meters under guest load, but the combined weight of the standing technician and surrounding leaning bamboos resulted in lifting cable No 4R at the northern end by at least 3 meters, reducing clearance by half or more.

Eight people had already crossed the valley when the guest engaged onto cable No 4. His vigorous jumpstart resulted in a strong vertical oscillation movement of the cable. When he reached the fatal intersection, he didn’t have any vertical clearance left underneath him to the returning zipline and both cables came close to contact.

The lower zipline cable N° 4R forced the harness strap sideways, grinding it horizontally along with the safety rope over the course of several meters due to the diverging trajectories of the two cables. The strap and safety rope were severed by friction (grinding/tearing/burning), resulting in our guest’s fall to the forest floor 20 meters below. CPR was performed over an hour without success.

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