NPS Says Knot Failure Cause of Va. Climbing Fatal

By: (AP) Email
By: (AP) Email

July 27, 2012

A National Park Service report says a knot failure caused an Alabama rock climber to fall to his death near the Blue Ridge Parkway in Virginia last year.

The report says the nonstandard knot, called a hitch/wrap, was weak. Also, there wasn't a backup to handle the load if any part of the rope climbing system failed.

The News and Advance obtained the report through the Freedom of Information Act.

Twenty-year-old Jonathan Sullivan of Alabaster, Ala., was ascending the cliff face at the Raven's Roost overlook in Nelson County with a group when he fell about 80 feet. The accident occurred on June 15, 2011.

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