Forums: Skydiving: Incidents:
Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012

 

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Premier WickedWingsuits  (D 30916)

Jan 3, 2013, 5:57 PM
Post #76 of 122 (1149 views)
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Re: [bodypilot90] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I have done 20 or so beach jumps there. If you can't find a safe place on 5000 miles or more of beach, you should not be jumping on the beach. Sure stuff goes wrong. I got turned around and couldn't find the LZ till i was to low to get there but I landed and walked to SBI. There is always a briefing with pictures. I have corrected the spot given by the pilot. I just do not see the point of a boat. YMMV
Surviving the last jump is no guarantee of surving the next. We are only as good as our next jump.

What happens if you have a malfunction and don't have control until you are under a reserve lower than planned?

Maybe it is just because I am nervous of water but the what-ifs concern me.

Each to their own, your decision doesn't affect mine and If there isn't a boat and a plan I don't have to jump.


(This post was edited by WickedWingsuits on Jan 3, 2013, 6:20 PM)


pchapman  (D 1014)

Jan 3, 2013, 6:13 PM
Post #77 of 122 (1131 views)
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Re: [Scrumpot] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Why during the jump, or - what was it apparently still even now - that made you think your wingsuit would have given you a better glide angle / longer (distance) flight than your open canopy?

If the winds were blowing off shore, then if she thought she'd get a better glide angle with the wing suit (relative to the surface, of course), I'd agree with her.

What we don't know is exactly what caused the water landing. Was it just newer wing suit jumpers taking too long to turn back 180 after exit? Wonder what the 2nd last group, before the wingsuiters, thought about the sport. Sebastien must be doing some things right in general if it is true that water landings don't happen for years. (Leaving aside the rescue boat issue.)


stardazzles1  (C 40453)

Jan 3, 2013, 6:48 PM
Post #78 of 122 (1113 views)
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Re: [WickedWingsuits] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

Yep you are absolutely correct. I strongly agree with that too! We aren't playing soccer here. The what if's could have killed me. Rest assure there won't be anymore what if's ever. I think with the whole rescue situation. I have heard that there hasn't been a water landing in over 7 yrs or so. Only what I have heard. I am assuming that is why there was no course of action for such events. I just hope I didn't screw it up for beach jumpers period.


popsjumper  (D 999999999)

Jan 3, 2013, 9:31 PM
Post #79 of 122 (1069 views)
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Re: [stardazzles1] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

My questions here have a two-fold purpose:
1. To verify for my own peace of mind that you are up-to-speed on EPs, and
2. As a discussion point for the youngsters.

Under canopy you got the part about the chest strap, you missed the RSL, you alluded to leg straps...
- Did you have a helmet? What type? What did you do with it and when?

- You had a floatation device. What type was it? Was it Coast Guard approved? How were you wearing it? When did you inflate it? Would you explain the part about holding it in your right hand while holding the gear in your left?



BTW...you are correct, in most cases by far and away that we're here discussing these types of things because of concern....both for the jumper and for the sport.

And yes, DZ.com can be extremely harsh...mostly when called for.


To all:
We are not your Nanny.
If you close your ears to advice because of the tone in which it was presented, you are doing yourself a great disservice.
Read the message, not the tone.



Thank you. This message has been brought to you by the letters E & P.
Smile


(This post was edited by popsjumper on Jan 3, 2013, 9:31 PM)


stardazzles1  (C 40453)

Jan 4, 2013, 5:08 AM
Post #80 of 122 (1006 views)
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Re: [popsjumper] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

I did not loosen the legs traps until I went in. I pulled the straps our of the legstrap padding itself but it was too difficult to loosen them n mid air so I waited until I landed then loosened them. Yes I have a helmet. I always wear helmet no matter what I am doing. It was an open face Rok helmet. I never took the helmet off until I got to shore. It's super light.
The flotation device was from the gear store at Sebastian. It was a manual not co2 cartridge style. I had it connected to my belt loop. So once I landed in I was already unzipped fully on wingsuit. In my particular situation, after hitting the water, I did not panic but assessed the situation, removed the main first got away from lines, got the flotation device from belt loop, blew it up for out of rig. I had the flotation device under my arm pit. Kinda laid over it. The rig and wingsuit I kept at an angle behind me to stay clear of reserve lines. It floated nicely but I knew there was a chance it could sink so if it had started to sink, I would have let it go. I never panicked not once. When you are in a situation like that, you don't have time to freak out! You have no choice, there is absolutely no if, and, buts about RELAXING AND SURVIVING AND WAITING!
Some people say get that flotation device blown up while under canopy. Well depends on if u have automatic or manual. I knew I had a manual, I knew my gear wasn't going to sink me to the bottom as soon as I hit the water and I had no time to blow it up while on the canopy which btw only took three blows. I remember that to a tee.
I want to elaborate on the legstraps for a moment. My harness is not articulated and I am not 100% sure if it even makes a difference loosening legstraps between the two. But my mind was wrapped around flying my canopy as quickly and hard as I could to get me closer. I did not wanna take a chance of loosening them and being uneven ny harness then having to shift myself around when I had much bigger issues to deal with. The last thing I needed was concerning myself with, "if I loosen legs will I have to worry about steering with legs, if I loosen legs will one be more loose than the other or will I be even." Nooh, Nooh, I had no time to worry about legs, everything else was loose and ready. I was completely ready to land at 4,000 feet. I had everything ready. So into particular situation I feel I had everything under control. I think I said, eweee, that water sure is going to be cold! To my surprise it wasn't or at least my adrenaline was telling me that.


DBCOOPER  (D 24112)

Jan 4, 2013, 5:55 AM
Post #81 of 122 (999 views)
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Re: [stardazzles1] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Because I still feel comfortable opening at the 5 mark, I opened this time as well. When I adjusted myself and started flying my canopy, I just felt winds against me not pushing me towards the beach.

In reply to:
No matter what I wasn't making it back and I knew this. As I opened, got my self situated, legs out of suit, arms free of course, loosened chest strap, unstowed, collapsed slider and pulled on rears best I could. .


Hanging on the rears is not going to help you penetrate into a headwind...


Premier WickedWingsuits  (D 30916)

Jan 4, 2013, 6:58 AM
Post #82 of 122 (966 views)
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Re: [stardazzles1] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

Being calm and relaxed when you get in the water is a key to survival.

I wonder, if you are not quite going to make it and are heading for the surf, maybe it makes sense to land further out when the water is calmer on then surface. I can see a lot of panic being created in the surf. Plus you have reefs to deal with. It's counter intuitive to land further out but it might be safer.

Just thinking out loud.


monkycndo  (D License)

Jan 4, 2013, 7:29 AM
Post #83 of 122 (942 views)
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Re: [WickedWingsuits] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

Simon, good question. The surf should be considered almost like a line of trees. If you are not positive you can make it over them, land short in the calmer water outside the surf line. When the Synchronized Skydiver Swim team landed in the water in Nicaragua, one jumper landed in the surf and swallowed a lot of water. All the rest that landed in the smoother water got rescued by the rescue boat and local fisherman. A few were out there for a good bit. Other than some water damaged gear, they were fine. The jumper that landed in the surf got tumbled pretty good. There is also the possibility of getting entangled in your lines.

When in doubt, take the out.


mr2mk1g  (C 103449)

Jan 4, 2013, 8:31 AM
Post #84 of 122 (894 views)
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Re: [WickedWingsuits] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

I think that's good thinking out loud though. I think landing in surf would be just about the worst kind of water landing I can imagine. Even in fast running water you pretty much know which way everything's going to be going and other than rapids there's a degree at least of predictability. Surf's a whole different ball game.


DocPop  (C License)

Jan 4, 2013, 8:47 AM
Post #85 of 122 (883 views)
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Re: [DBCOOPER] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Hanging on the rears is not going to help you penetrate into a headwind...

No, but if you are making any headway into the wind, using a touch of rears to flatten the glide will make you go further.

A "touch" might only be 1-3 inches to plane out the glide path.


Premier billvon  (D 16479)
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Jan 4, 2013, 8:53 AM
Post #86 of 122 (878 views)
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Re: [DocPop] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

>No, but if you are making any headway into the wind, using a touch of rears to flatten
>the glide will make you go further.

Not in strong winds it won't. It will slow your forward speed and result in you stopping or backing up. Your best bet if you are making any headway at all is to stay at full glide, clean up as much as possible and hope the winds drop as you descend.


Premier SkymonkeyONE  (D 12501)

Jan 4, 2013, 9:16 AM
Post #87 of 122 (858 views)
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Re: [DocPop] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

Lots of good points in this thread, so I'm only going to add the one thing that I did not see posted so that everyone has it fresh in their minds. I have always taught my students (ALL of my students: AFF/SL/Military/WS) to understand what is considered "high winds" and how the RSL comes into play in those situations; never mind the fact that there was also water involved in this "incident":

-winds above 12 mph are generally considered "high", particularly when they are gusting above 14 mph. If winds get above that while a load is up we generally pass the info up from the ground to the plane, assuming the pilot has not already done so because he/she saw it on their GPS ground track in the plane.

-In "high winds" I always brief my students to disconnect their RSL's prior to entering the downwind portion of their landing pattern. Many places tell their students to do so as soon as they know they have a cleanly-flying canopy over their heads. A perfect example of this can be found at MANY, MANY busy dropzones that jump in generally-quite-high winds where the tandem instructors ALL disconnect their RSL's as soon as their canopies are open (Eloy is a perfect example).

- I've never been to a dropzone that did not teach disconnecting the RSL if there was a chance of a water landing. It's actually one of the most important things to do in case of a water landing other than undoing your chest strap completely.


Ultimately, it's up to you, the jumper, to rehearse these procedures over and over prior to jumping. I go through my EP's and post-opening procedures in my head several times in the plane prior to exiting so that I don't forget a step. That's easy to do when you are constantly going back and forth between tandem, sport, wingsuit, and military gear.

Glad you made it out safe! Definitely a learning experience.

Chuck Blue, D-12501
AFF/SL/TM-I, MMPCI, PFC/E, PRO, S&TA


stardazzles1  (C 40453)

Jan 4, 2013, 9:38 AM
Post #88 of 122 (842 views)
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Re: [WickedWingsuits] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

To answer that from my point of view. Let me just say that while I was being pulled in on the kayak. I was still in the water hanging on. Once we got closer to the shore but still unable to touch bottom, the waives were horrific. A huge waive came over the top of us and actually caused the other skydiver on the kayak to be thrown off and the kayak went flying up in the air. I was able to retrieve it quickly both her and I flipped it back over and that is when a local man who owned the kayak started swimming to us. So, I would say it was safer landing further out than closer to the shore line.


stardazzles1  (C 40453)

Jan 4, 2013, 9:45 AM
Post #89 of 122 (833 views)
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Re: [SkymonkeyONE] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks. To be honest with you, I did not think about the RSL until I cut away the main. As soon as i cut away, I said, "AWE SH..." I always check my gear on the ground several times, going to the plane, several times on the plane, and right before I leave the plane. However, I just wasn't thinking hard enough about the RSL until I had already pulled my cut away. I guess with everything going on at one time, I overlooked this. I am a wind wuss and all my friends know it. So, I never normally jump in winds over 20 and if the winds are gusting even at 15, I will not jump. Lesson learned for sure. I do know that the biggest lesson I learned here and I have learned a lot is that under no circumstances will I ever ever make a load when I haven't recieved a clear response about the winds. It was my responsiblity to find out 100% and even though I asked several times, I never got a straight answer, THAT IS STILL MY FAULT.


DocPop  (C License)

Jan 4, 2013, 10:43 AM
Post #90 of 122 (794 views)
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Re: [billvon] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
>No, but if you are making any headway into the wind, using a touch of rears to flatten
>the glide will make you go further.

Not in strong winds it won't. It will slow your forward speed and result in you stopping or backing up. .

In that case you are using too much rears (a very common occurrence).

A small amount of rears will flatten the glide without decreasing airspeed appreciably according to data I have seen presented in canopy courses.

ETA: Obviously if you're not making any headway, rears are not going to help! Good point about cleaning up parasitic drag, though.


(This post was edited by DocPop on Jan 4, 2013, 10:44 AM)


popsjumper  (D 999999999)

Jan 4, 2013, 11:49 AM
Post #91 of 122 (756 views)
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Re: [stardazzles1] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I did not loosen the legs traps until I went in.
You may have noticed above that loosening legstraps under canopy may not be a good idea...especially so for younger jumpers. So, you're good there.

In reply to:
Yes I have a helmet. I always wear helmet no matter what I am doing. It was an open face Rok helmet. I never took the helmet off until I got to shore. It's super light.

Just wondering because there has been discussion, and arguments on when to remove the helmet...and yes, it may depend on what type of helmet you have.

In reply to:
The flotation device was from the gear store at Sebastian. It was a manual not co2 cartridge style. I had it connected to my belt loop.
Rats. One of the worst possible choices for floatation devices. The best choice is an inflatable vest type with both CO2 and manual options. Evidently you didn't know if it was CC approved?

In reply to:
Some people say get that flotation device blown up while under canopy. Well depends on if u have automatic or manual.
No, that is incorrect.
I have no clue who would tell you to wait until you were in the water to inflate your float. IMO, that just crazy.
In your case (you said you were prepared to land at 4K) you had plenty of time to blow it up particularly if it only took the 3 blows you indicated.

In the future, inflate it before you land.

And...another word about that...

SIM says
1. Inflate the float*
2. Disconnect chest strap
3. Disconnect RSL

I personally don't agree with that particular order but there you have it.

*AFTER you disconnect the chest strap, particularly if you have the vest-type....which is why I disagree with the order presented by the SIM.

In reply to:
I was completely ready to land at 4,000 feet.

Plenty of time to do ALL the housekeeping.



Questions for you and all other young jumpers:

1. Why do we disconnect the RSL?
2. Is that necessary if you land in a pond? Why/why not?


(This post was edited by popsjumper on Jan 4, 2013, 11:51 AM)


Scrumpot  (D License)

Jan 4, 2013, 12:07 PM
Post #92 of 122 (736 views)
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Re: [popsjumper] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

Andy - Not so sure I agree in this case in particular with regards to the flotation device advice. "Normally", yes - inflate it first. However, in this case, it sounds like she had to completely detach it from herself, to blow it up. If that is so (I'd reconsider this as a useful/effective device) the risk of her dropping it / losing it altogether during canopy flight would not be good.


strop45  (D 957)

Jan 4, 2013, 12:40 PM
Post #93 of 122 (714 views)
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Re: [popsjumper] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

One other thing to note here is that it is difficult to judge distance over the sea. Above land there are all sorts of things which help you judge altitude, distance, ground speed etc..

I've seen very experienced skydivers end up in the water on beach jumps because they misjudged the wind speed and ground/sea speed and landed short.

One key message here is that its best not to put yourself too much seaward. In a wind suit arrange your pattern to put over the land if possible. Without a windsuit be very aware of the spot and try not to end up too much seaward.

stay safe


stardazzles1  (C 40453)

Jan 4, 2013, 12:44 PM
Post #94 of 122 (714 views)
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Re: [popsjumper] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

Well there are different reasons to disconnect an RSL. My situation I should have disconnect under canopy as to not allow my reserve to come out because I knew I would be chopping the main immediately upon impacting the water. Also, when we are in strong wind conditions on the ground, say we land but winds are acting goofy, we would want to disconnect because we may have to pull the cut away handle while on the ground, we dont want the reserve to come out, if we know we will be landing on a building, we would want to disconnect it as well. And I have read that even crew disconnect the rsl in case of entanglement. If you had two canopies in the air, you would disconnect the rsl if you decided to cut away the main. Tree landings and power lines too. If I landed in a pond, I would still disconnect the rsl because we learn in water training that you disconnect your rsl before landing any body of water.


flyingmontana  (D 31509)

Jan 4, 2013, 2:15 PM
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Re: [monkycndo] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

"When the Synchronized Skydiver Swim team landed in the water in Nicaragua, one jumper landed in the surf and swallowed a lot of water. All the rest that landed in the smoother water got rescued by the rescue boat and local fisherman. A few were out there for a good bit. Other than some water damaged gear, they were fine."

As the Nicaragua Swim Team jumper who landed farthest out, I don't quite agree with you, and think you have left out important elements here, particularly the fact that the one who landed in the surf and swallowed a lot of water DIDN'T KNOW HOW TO SWIM! As we jumped before dawn and rescue boats weren't even out at the time, we were really in big trouble out there (I was about a mile out) and SO lucky the one fishing boat happened to see me and find me. If it had taken them any longer to get to me I was very close to drowning, with booties dragging me down, rig soaked and sinking, and no flotation gear. And obviously, the clearest lesson for all of us was that we should have had flotation gear (no one on the load did, except one wingsuiter). It still amazes me that someone who couldn't swim was doing a beach landing with no flotation gear. I'm glad the Sebastian jumper is OK!


Premier DSE  (D 29060)

Jan 4, 2013, 2:50 PM
Post #96 of 122 (631 views)
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Re: [flyingmontana] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

It is a common instruction to land farther, rather than closer to shorelines.
As a person who regularly produces events in Hawaii, this is one of the first aspects of the briefing:" Do not land close to the shore."
Between the waves and currents closer in, it is a significantly higher risk.

I've intentionally been in waves, stream/currents, and calm waters; waves are scary. Currents are scarier. Mix them, and it's a very sketchy situation.


bodypilot90  (D 24249)

Jan 4, 2013, 5:05 PM
Post #97 of 122 (580 views)
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Re: [stardazzles1] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

ok it it always more windy at the beach than at Sebastian dz. More open space, And your wind loading is under 1 to 1 in winds 15-20 mph, with a 7 cell. I am glad you are ok.


Premier WickedWingsuits  (D 30916)

Jan 4, 2013, 5:25 PM
Post #98 of 122 (570 views)
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Re: [flyingmontana] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
"When the Synchronized Skydiver Swim team landed in the water in Nicaragua, one jumper landed in the surf and swallowed a lot of water. All the rest that landed in the smoother water got rescued by the rescue boat and local fisherman. A few were out there for a good bit. Other than some water damaged gear, they were fine."

As the Nicaragua Swim Team jumper who landed farthest out, I don't quite agree with you, and think you have left out important elements here, particularly the fact that the one who landed in the surf and swallowed a lot of water DIDN'T KNOW HOW TO SWIM! As we jumped before dawn and rescue boats weren't even out at the time, we were really in big trouble out there (I was about a mile out) and SO lucky the one fishing boat happened to see me and find me. If it had taken them any longer to get to me I was very close to drowning, with booties dragging me down, rig soaked and sinking, and no flotation gear. And obviously, the clearest lesson for all of us was that we should have had flotation gear (no one on the load did, except one wingsuiter). It still amazes me that someone who couldn't swim was doing a beach landing with no flotation gear. I'm glad the Sebastian jumper is OK!

Thats another good point. Might seem obvious but if there is a boat out there...even if it is behind you...aim for it! Well, not so much you hit it but that you land near it. You can give them a demo while you are at it.


popsjumper  (D 999999999)

Jan 4, 2013, 7:51 PM
Post #99 of 122 (519 views)
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Re: [Scrumpot] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Andy - Not so sure I agree in this case in particular with regards to the flotation device advice. "Normally", yes - inflate it first. However, in this case, it sounds like she had to completely detach it from herself, to blow it up. If that is so (I'd reconsider this as a useful/effective device) the risk of her dropping it / losing it altogether during canopy flight would not be good.

If you are flying with a floatation device that is not securely attached to you for freefall, you are making a big mistake...just for the reason you mentioned if nothing else.

It sounds as though she was using an Air Force type (LPU) underarm flotation device in which case it may not be advisable to inflate it under canopy. Not the best choice by far and away, though.


popsjumper  (D 999999999)

Jan 4, 2013, 7:58 PM
Post #100 of 122 (513 views)
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Re: [stardazzles1] Water landing? - Sebastian FL - 28 December 2012 [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
... If I landed in a pond, I would still disconnect the rsl because we learn in water training that you disconnect your rsl before landing any body of water.

YAAAAAAYYYYY! Kudos to whoever taught you that.

In reality, it probably wouldn't be necessary at all in a pond BUT.....BUUUUUUTTTTTT...do it anyway.

I tell my students to ALWAYS make the RSL disconnect under canopy part of the under-canopy procedures. If you land in a situation that would warrant it, you will not have forgotten to do it.

All you said is true. Good stuff for you even though I was only asking about water-related stuff.


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