Throop, W.; Kees, G. 2016. Effects of pathogen decontamination on the strength of climbing rope and harness equipment. 1734–2801–NTDP. Tech. Rep. Missoula, MT: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, National Technology and Development Program. 16 p.
Decontaminating caving gear is important for reducing the spread of pathogens such as the fungus that causes white-nose syndrome in bats. The U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, National Technology and Development Program (NTDP), evaluated the effect of the current decontamination protocol on the strength of popular models of ropes and harnesses. The decontamination procedure had minimal effects on the strength of the ropes and harnesses that NTDP tested.
Please note that decontamination guidelines may or may not meet manufacturer's recommendations for cleaning gear. Please check your owner's manuals for recommendations on caring for your equipment.
Keywords: caving, climbing harness, climbing rope, decontaminate, decontamination, EN 12277:2007, hot waterbath, white-nose syndrome