Firefighters last week spent half a day climbing up and rappelling down North America’s largest observation wheel, the 550-foot High Roller in Las Vegas. Clark County Deputy Fire Chief Thomas Touchstone said his team practices the high-angle manuevers on a regular basis, but it’s important to practice the types of situations they would face if they had to rescue someone from the High Roller. He said the crew members enjoy the training. “They’re probably all adrenaline junkies,” he said.
Class discussion: Could you see yourself climbing up a huge observation wheel? How about dangling from a rope hundreds of feet above the ground? In 2021, about 150 people were stranded when the High Roller stopped for 90 minutes before maintenance workers got it going again. Could you remain calm if you were struck 500 feet in the air? Does it make you feel safer to know there are “adrenaline junkies” regularly training to perform emergency rescues? What can you do to help prepare for an emergency?