Friday, December 2, 2022

U.S. Marines conduct fast-rope training in Japan

U.S. Marines with 3d Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, currently attached to 3d Marine Division as a part of the Unit Deployment Program, conducted fast-rope and rappel training from a CH-53E Super Stallion heavy-lift helicopters aboard Camp Schwab, Okinawa, Japan.

Last week, marines going through the course learned the skill required to fast-rope and methods of rappelling. The Marines also learned how to tie various knots to ensure safety during operations.

“The Marines conducted unit level training integrated with air assets, improving 3d Marine Division’s capability to operate in a distributed environment across the INDO-PACIFIC region,” said the 3rd Marine Divisio in the statement.


Fast-roping, also known as the Fast Rope Insertion Extraction System (FRIES), is a technique for descending a thick rope. It is useful for deploying troops from a helicopter in places where the helicopter itself cannot touch down.

Fast roping is particularly useful for marines, who can use the technique to board ships at sea as well as to reach destinations on land. It is quicker than abseiling (rappelling), although more dangerous, particularly if the person is carrying a heavy load, because the rope is not attached to them with a descended.

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About this Author

Daisuke Sato
Daisuke Sato is defense reporter, covering the Asia-Pacific defense industrial base, defense markets and all related issues.