Coping with Competition
Using competition butterflies to make your performance better, not worse...
In the last two months we had four premature openings…. One inside the aircraft, three in freefall. One of them ended with major bodily injuries to the skydiver involved. What can we learn from these dangerous incidents?…
A wingsuiter taking his place behind the pilot in a Cessna Grand Caravan rubbed his rig against the protection of the pilot seat and inadvertently pushed out the pin of his reserve canopy. It was annoying but no harm was done, this happened before take-off, so he just had to get out of the plane.
2. One skydiver (55 jumps) was part of a rookie coaching team. An instructor and three rookies were jumping together. The rear floater forgot the five dirtdives, climbed out with his back towards the tail and scraped the doorframe with his rig. On the video, the flaps of his main were already open on the exit count. As the group exited, the main bag came out, wrapping the lines snugly around the bridle. The pilot chute came out by the drag of the bridle. The skydiver cut away and sat under his reserve above 10,000 feet.
A skydiver (45 jumps) was following a WARP-style course. He prepared for a linked exit as diver of a 2-way formation out of the Cessna Grand Caravan. He stood in the door. As he's quite tall, his main rig touched the door, which was rolled open above him, and his main pin protection flap was opened. On the “up, down, out”, of the count he pushed the main pin out. As he exited the door, the four flaps were open. The main came out, but in this case the pilot chute did not come out…
…This resulted in a horseshoe-type malfunction. Confused and surprised by this unusual situation, the skydiver pulled his reserve ripcord without cutting away. This became a two-canopies-out situation, which he rode down to landing.
Unluckily for him, one of the canopies hit a tree, causing a hard landing with broken bones and spinal injuries.
This video shows the exit from inside the plane:
During a freefly camp, one skydiver experienced a sudden opening of his main container at 7,500 feet. It turned out his canopy was too small for his harness. Combining this with the high windspeed over the containers due to a sitfly jump resulted in this premature opening.