Forums: Skydiving: Incidents:
Fatality - No parachute - Duanesburg, NY- 07 June 2008

 

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masterblaster72  (A License)

Jun 7, 2008, 8:01 PM
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Fatality - No parachute - Duanesburg, NY- 07 June 2008 Can't Post

 
from here:

Quote:
DUANESBURG, N.Y. - A 29-year-old man leaped out of a plane at 10,000 feet with a camera but no parachute Saturday. His body was found next to a house with a damaged roof, police said.

Sloan Carafello of Schenectady, who was observing on the flight, followed an instructor, student and videographer out the door, wearing no skydiving gear, officials said.

Police said they did not suspect foul play but would not elaborate.

Robert Rawlins, pilot and owner of the Duanesburg Skydiving Club, said he was flying the single-engine plane and had begun to close the door when Carafello jumped.

His body was found next to a house west of Albany.

Not even sure if this incident is appropriate for this forum, but thought I'd bring it up since I didn't see a post for it here yet. If it is not appropriate (as the lesson is most basic and obvious), I ask the mods to kindly dispose of this thread.


(This post was edited by PhreeZone on Jun 9, 2008, 9:29 AM)


Phillbo  (B License)

Jun 7, 2008, 8:11 PM
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Re: [masterblaster72] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

Suicide


hackish  (No License)

Jun 7, 2008, 8:22 PM
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Re: [Phillbo] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

In the US is every member on the jumpship required to have a rig on? Here even the pilot wears a PEP. I've heard of people almost boarding a jump plane having forgotten their rig.

-Michael


BillyVance  (D 18895)

Jun 7, 2008, 8:32 PM
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Re: [hackish] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In the US is every member on the jumpship required to have a rig on? Here even the pilot wears a PEP.
-Michael

Not that I'm aware of. Not every pilot of every jump plane has worn a pilot's rig, and not every observer I've seen has worn an observer's rig.


lippy  (D 30348)

Jun 7, 2008, 8:40 PM
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Re: [hackish] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

I've never seen an observer (or a pilot in North America) in a small Cessna without at least a pilot's rig. Right seat in a big plane it's a different story: flight deck as opposed to cabin I think, assuming they're up front. There was at least one fatality back in the old days before piggy-back rigs from a camera flyer jumping without a rig, but that doesn't seem relevent to this case.

Where was the passenger sitting during the jumpers' exit? Did he have some kind of parachute and training on how to use it should it be necessary?

It would seem like a suicide from what few details we have, but it could be useful to have some more details.


LongWayToFall  (A 52639)

Jun 7, 2008, 8:48 PM
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Re: [masterblaster72] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

Single engine plane=cessna? Does anyone know the aircraft type? What if the guy fell out after the pilot did a violent maneuver, such as a wing over or zero G? Don't you think the pilot would tell the authorities that he jumped (suicide)? If he was in a cessna without being trained on and wearing a bail out rig, then the pilot should be in some shit, the door is very close to where he would be sitting. The article notes that the pilot was beginning to close the door, it has to be a cessna because I doubt there are any other aircraft that have a door the pilot can reach.
Interested in knowing more details........


rushmc  (No License)

Jun 7, 2008, 8:56 PM
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Re: [lippy] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I've never seen an observer (or a pilot in North America) in a small Cessna without at least a pilot's rig. Right seat in a big plane it's a different story: flight deck as opposed to cabin I think, assuming they're up front. There was at least one fatality back in the old days before piggy-back rigs from a camera flyer jumping without a rig, but that doesn't seem relevent to this case.

Where was the passenger sitting during the jumpers' exit? Did he have some kind of parachute and training on how to use it should it be necessary?

It would seem like a suicide from what few details we have, but it could be useful to have some more details.

As I understand it;

If the plane has a bulkhead between the pilot and right seat, neither the pilot or the one in the right seat is required to wear a chute.

Caravans, Otters, Skyvans, ECT
I did not see the the plane was here


Colson

Jun 7, 2008, 9:07 PM
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Re: [masterblaster72] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

*speculation*

He wants to get pictures of his friends exiting.

He unbuckles his seatbelt, waits until his friends are on the step and crawls up to the door as they leave.

Unaware pilot swings door shut with rudder.

he is ejected from the airplane.

Quote:
Robert Rawlins, pilot and owner of the Duanesburg Skydiving Club, said he was flying the single-engine plane and had begun to close the door when Carafello jumped.



Just a thought.


jumpin_Jan  (D 12256)

Jun 7, 2008, 9:14 PM
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Re: [LongWayToFall] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

As per this link
http://timesunion.com/...mp;newsdate=6/7/2008

It was a 182.

Sad :(


PULL!
jumpin_Jan


JohnDeere  (D License)

Jun 7, 2008, 9:20 PM
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Re: [masterblaster72] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

said he was flying the single-engine plane and had begun to close the door when Carafello jumped.

////////////////////////////////

On 182 or simular i have seen some pilots bank to the right to get the door to swing in.


tumbler  (D 29323)

Jun 7, 2008, 9:42 PM
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Re: [masterblaster72] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

Hello. I am a jumper at Duanesburg and was at the DZ today, albeit not on this load. I was the one that called 911 and will relay what happened as I was told by the videographer and from what I know from personally dealing with him.

The observer had called several times over the past month wanting to take a ride and photograph the area for a college project he was doing, at least that is what he told me when I spoke to him on the phone. He also said he didnt have much money, so the DZO spoke to him and told him he could come out and take the photos on a load that we had a tandem going up.

He arrived at the DZ today around noon. He filled out a waiver, and I personally instructed him on what would happen in the airplane. The pilot would slow the plane, the tandem instructor would open the door, check the spot, the video person would exit, the tandem pair would exit, the pilot would close the door and he would be allowed to move and photo after that. I told him to keep on his seatbelt the entire time.

As jump run approached, the video person again instructed him to keep on his seatbelt, the tandem instructor reached over and pulled on the seatbelt to ensure it was buckled. He was sitting behind the pilot, this is a 182 wide body. the TI opened the door, checked the spot and the video person got on step. The TI moved into position, now with his back to the observer. The Tandem left, the pilot reached to close the door and the observer pushed his hand off the door handle and leaped from the plane, less than 5 seconds after the tandem the pair left the plane. It is seen on the tandem video.

The video person saw the leap from the plane as he was panning for the plane fade away shot. The observer was then seen, in freefall, snapping pictures of himself while falling back to earth. No spin, no potato chipping.. solid.

The pilot tried to grab him also, but he was out so fast there was nothing that could be done. He had a plan, and he executed that plan.

There was no note found. We dont know how he got to the dropzone as there was no unaccounted for car. We all wonder why now, and hindsight being what it is we all wonder was there something we should have seen that would have clued us in on what he was going to do.

Personally, the shock still has not worn off, and I am sure it wont for a long time. I also know that goes for all of us. The man took off his seatbelt, pushed the pilots arm out of the way and jumped to his death. We are all left with why.

I am sure I am leaving some things out and there are going to be questions that you would like answered. I am still torn by this, but wanted to get what happened out here.

Tom


lawrocket  (Student)

Jun 7, 2008, 9:46 PM
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Re: [jumpin_Jan] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

General Schwartzenegger as emergency contact?

HE took pictures of himself on the way down?

I've got my assumptions.


blacksha  (B 31921)

Jun 7, 2008, 10:31 PM
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Re: [lawrocket] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

Really sad. If the guy could be seen taking pictures, then I assume it could be seen whether or not he was arching for stability? Falling straight down without spinning sounds kind of unusual to me...of course, with something that happens so fast it's difficult to judge completely what happened in a 55 to 60 second fall without a personal videographer...


bigway

Jun 7, 2008, 10:36 PM
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Re: [tumbler] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

Sorry you guys have to deal with this crap and thank you for your post.

It probably would not have made a difference in this situation but how come your observer was not wearing at least a pilots rig?

Is it law that they must in the states?

Where i come from, it does not matter what plane you are in, if you are an observer you must be in a rig and have a briefing on emergency procedures.

Is this not mandatory where you guys are based?


Okay, all that aside of why was he not wearing one..... If it is mandatory for him to wear a rig, is this wanker who killed himself at your dropzone going to be causing you guys more problems seeing you did not put a rig on him?

Maybe a lesson that can be learnt here is that in future all observers to be strapped into a student rig with an AAD on it. Sure they migbht be able to take it off but maybe once they have jumped they might pull the canopy out at the last minute realising they dont want to die.



I hope your dropzone survives this incident caused by a selfish wanker and i hope you guys stay strong and give each other the support that you need.

Thanks for posting.


Stuntbabex  (B 31228)

Jun 7, 2008, 11:04 PM
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Re: [tumbler] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

Forgive me if this sounds impractical or far fetched but if the videographer saw the man jump and could see him taking pics of himself, did he try to fly over to him at all? I know it sounds like some stupid stunt from a skydive movie but I dunno. I just know that would be my first reaction.


bigway

Jun 7, 2008, 11:12 PM
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Re: [Stuntbabex] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

You think after 86 jumps that you know that would be your first reaction?
Your first reaction would be shock.
If you are to believe that when encountered with that sort of shock that you would go and fly over the person, first of all that would take alot of skill to get to his altitude and then get near a person with no experience in the sky........

Keep in mind when trying this stunt that you will be in shock and that all you should concetrate on is remembering to pull your canopy, as well as pulling your canopy out where you are not in the path for a collision with the unexperienced jumper.


No offence to you matre but if you were to be encountered with such a situation the last thing you would want to do is fly anywhere near this nut case. He is trying to kill himself and would probably have no problem taking you out as well. With the shock you would also feel seeing such a thing it would be hard enough just to remember to pull your own canopy out.


Stuntbabex  (B 31228)

Jun 7, 2008, 11:17 PM
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Re: [bigway] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

Youre probably right.


bigway

Jun 7, 2008, 11:25 PM
Post #18 of 277 (10894 views)
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Re: [Stuntbabex] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

When i had the jump numbers you had, I played this scenario through my head a million times thinking i could do such a thingCool

I have later leant that it would be best just to stay away from the person and worry about myself or it will be me going in with them.


Sure, we would all like to think that we could save a person falling without a rig but some of the grreatest jumpers in the world on these forums have even just watched their best mate go in as they know it is all they can do. different situation and different speeds but same result.


In my opinion, seeing something like this in front of my eyes i believe it would be hard enough to remember altitude awareness and pull time.


tumbler  (D 29323)

Jun 7, 2008, 11:36 PM
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Re: [bigway] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

I cant answer for Mark, who was flying the video. He would have to do that... I know we talked about it after he was down and we had a chance to catch out breath. From what he relayed to me...

"Oh my GOD... there is someone else out of the plane.. it is the observer... let me try to get to him.. wait.. he jumped without a rig.. I am filming a tandem, where are they... where is he.. I have him.. let me fly there... he is trying to kill himself... pull when I should.. John (TI) pull when you should.. he is away from us... OK.. OH MY GOD." All this in 15 seconds, in freefall.. and Mark has over 4000 video jumps... there was no Hollywood on this one.

If you were to hear the screams on the video you wouldn't be sleeping either.


flyinhi79  (A 53470)

Jun 8, 2008, 12:00 AM
Post #20 of 277 (10852 views)
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Re: [tumbler] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

I am totally blown away reading this! I hope all involved are able to move on and not be haunted by this unthinkable situation.

Blue Skies,

Daniel


bigway

Jun 8, 2008, 12:17 AM
Post #21 of 277 (10839 views)
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Re: [tumbler] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

Glad you guys stuck to taking care of yourselves.

Slow down on the wine, I imagine you have a big day ahead of you.


LongWayToFall  (A 52639)

Jun 8, 2008, 12:43 AM
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Re: [tumbler] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

Taking pictures of himself? Damn. Well that would almost completely rule out falling from the plane. Also, the fact that he was wearing a seatbelt makes me feel better, about the safety of the dz and the fact that he had a chance to ensure he remained in the plane. Man, what an asshole to come and off himself at your dz.


hommie

Jun 8, 2008, 2:55 AM
Post #23 of 277 (10754 views)
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Re: [masterblaster72] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

Not so sure this does belong in here at all. Doesn't sound related to skydiving in the sense that the person was not a skydiver, more of a passenger who wanted to commit suicide.

a very sad story, but nothing to learn from..

The dz seems to have done nothing wrong, nor the pilot. File this one under a sad story and someone wanting to go out in an unusual way.


tombuch  (D 8514)

Jun 8, 2008, 4:02 AM
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Re: [LongWayToFall] Fatality 6/7/08 - Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies (from Yahoo News) [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Also, the fact that he was wearing a seatbelt makes me feel better, about the safety of the dz and the fact that he had a chance to ensure he remained in the plane.

This is a tough incident to comment on, but I'll bite at a few points.

First, I always questioned why an observer is taking the ride, and have always spent considerable time training them in what to do, and how to handle an aircraft emergency. It's important that this discussion be handled by an actual instructor, first so that accurate information is conveyed, but also because an instructor has more experience evaluating lay people and anticipating how they will react to the open door of an airplane. It sounds like in this case the man intended to kill himself, and it's possible that nobody could have detected it in advance, but a full and detailed briefing is still important. It's unclear how well this observer was briefed about the actual jump (as opposed to the picture taking). It's also curious to note from the news stories that he listed his "emergency contact" as "General Schwarzenegger," but apparently this document wasn't inspected by the drop zone staff before he was allowed to go up. That emergency contact alone should have been drawn attention, and should have been seen by the drop zone.

The seatbelt and no parachute is interesting, and of major concern. In a Cessna the passenger is always going to be close to the door, and as others have suggested, there is a chance of him accidentally falling out as he stretches to see the exit, or as the pilot banks the plane. So he should be wearing a rig. Using a seatbelt as an alternative is a really bad idea. If something goes wrong and the aircraft is damaged by a premature opening, there is no way the passenger is going to survive. It stuns me from a safety standpoint that a DZ would send an observer up, sitting in the open door of a Cessna, without a rig. I hope that at least the pilot always wears a rig.

There are also some interesting legal issues here that are worth examining by all United States drop zones. First, it is my understanding that the Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) required for alteration of the door on a typical Cessna requires the use of a parachute by all occupants. Each DZ should dig into their maintenance records for that STC and identify any requirements or limitations. We should also be familiar with FAR 91.107 that requires “…each person on board a US registered civil aircraft…must occupy an approved seat or berth…” This regulation goes on to say that a person may “…Use the floor of the aircraft as a seat, provided that the person is on board for the purpose of engaging in sport parachute jumping…” An observer is a passenger, not a jumper, and is clearly not on board to participate in sport parachuting. While some drop zones still allow observers, many do not, and those that do are often very restrictive in who and when observers will be accommodated. In this case it sounds like the observer really expressed no interest in being a parachutist, but rather, was looking for an inexpensive means of doing aerial photography. This seems to be a long stretch to fit the mission under 91.107. All drop zones would do well to review this passenger rides in jump ships under this regulation.

This pilot has had problems in the past. Bob Rawlins (owner of the DZ) was charged by the FAA for flying jumpers for compensation or hire with just a private pilot license. There were many other issues that concerned the FAA at the time, but this is all they prosecuted. You can read the case at: http://www.ntsb.gov/...cs/AVIATION/4583.pdf. I am also absolutely certain that he has had non-instructors teaching his students in the past, but don't know if that is the case now. I also know he has flown quite a few loads in clouds. While Bob is often thought of as a good person, he is also well known in the area as a DZ owner who is willing to play fast and loose with the rules.

I'll also note the DZ had an airplane crash on November 27, 2004 due to pilot error. The NTSB report is available at:http://www.ntsb.gov/...YC05LA022&akey=1

In the skydiving business, reputation is everything. The history of this operation makes me wonder how much control they maintained over the incident jump. Again, it's possible that nobody could have identified and anticipated the actions of the suicide jumper. Still, it points to the need for a drop zone to affirmatively manage its operation and reputation.


(This post was edited by tombuch on Jun 8, 2008, 8:51 AM)


Skytony  (D 21137)

Jun 8, 2008, 4:17 AM
Post #25 of 277 (10694 views)
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I believe that there is something to learn here. The biggest thing would be to have a student rig on the observer. I am not sure if it is mandatory in the U.S. but it should be.

And it is related to skydiving, as it happened in a jump ship with skydivers in it, at a DZ.

I feel bad for my friends in D'burg. I wish you all the best.

Tony


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