Rescue at Height Days with Sebastián
Professional firefighter, Sebastián, tells us how he imagined and created the Rescue At Height Days in Spain, an unmissable event that allows vertical rescue professionals to gather, discuss, practice and perfect their techniques.
September 21 2020
What is your name?
Sebastián Barragán Parreño
What is your nationality?
What is your job and your experience, and what would you like to share with us about your passions or hobbies?
I've been working as a firefighter for 29 years. Since 2012, I have been the head of a firefighters association whose mission is to concentrate the abundance of energy coming from rescue professionals and meet their desire for improvement. I don't want to talk about myself, but rather about the group of people who made seven editions of the "Flojos Rescue Team" Rescue at Height Days possible, along with the support of numerous Spanish fire departments and work-at-height teams.
Can you introduce your business?
The "Flojos Rescue Team" is a Spanish association that offers training and techniques for rescue at height.
Talk about one of your work sites.
What is the main objective?
For every past and future event, our goal is to meet the expectations of verticality professionals who attend, and ensure that they leave with a desire to return next year, thanks to the practical day, among other things, that allows them to train and improve their technique.
What resources do you use?
Our most important resource is people. I work with a group of people who unselfishly organize the Rescue at Height Days in their free time. We also count on the invaluable collaboration of several companies in the industry, like Petzl, who support us unconditionally and make it possible to attract more people for the event every year.
What are the specific points, constraints, and difficulties?
Without a doubt, the greatest challenge we face every year is the creation and preparation of the practical exercises, which are done in advance in an effort to correspond with the technical level of the participants. The level rises each year, which means that we have to adapt in order to meet their expectations. One difficulty that I can highlight is that we are working against the clock, considering that we have to start preparing the event about six months in advance.
What are the highlights of this event?
For me, the highlight was when I met up with my friends Pablo and Jose and we decided to organize the event for the following year. Another important moment is when I contacted my team of consultants and they responded with, "I'm on board". Or when the heads of companies that I contacted told me "we will be there to help with whatever you need". And of course, when I saw that all the participant spaces were filled in a matter of minutes! All of this made the Rescue at Height Days a great success!
What does the average day in your profession consist of?
As the leader of a fire department team, my work requires organization, coordination, and above all, team management. With the organization of next year's Rescue at Height Days, I make sure that these two aspects of my work go as well as possible. It requires many hours of training and creating practical exercises, hours of preparing and managing equipment, or even hours of making calls to various companies in the sector, etc. All of this goes into organizing an event of this scale.
Can you tell us a funny, personal, or improbable anecdote?
It's difficult to summarize my experiences for all seven editions of Rescue at Height Days. However, I would especially like to mention the moment when Jaime and Garci (two technical consultants) put their heart and soul into creating practical exercises that were varied and spectacular! Or when, exhausted after a session of preparation and training, we were talking, relaxed, looking back on what we had accomplished.
It's evident that through my words, I really want to highlight that it would be impossible to realise the "Flojos Rescue Team" Rescue at Height Days without the excellent team of people that surround me. Thank you everyone!