Mar 9, 2001, 7:41 AM
Post #1 of 3
Gear Checks & Safety Day
I am a new skydiver (only 42 jumps) and I have some thoughts about Gear Checks, what with Safety Day coming up...
When I finished AFF, but before I got my A license, I used to walk up to people before boarding & ask them to give me a gear check. They'd kind of look at me for a second and go, "Um, oh alright"
After a while I noticed no one else (except for students & very new skydivers) asks other people to give them a gear check. Feeling a little geeky, I eventually followed suit and just gave myself a thorough gear check from then on.
I'm wondering, is this normal? Is giving a gear check to yourself the same as getting another pair of eyes & hands to do it? How necessary is it for people to give other people gear checks/ And if it is necessary, how come it's only students/newbies who are expected to do it?
At my DZ many very experienced jumpers still do pin checks on the plane at the very least. I've jumped with people who still do a quick gear check before a dive. The big 3 check is highly encouraged at our DZ.
I always do my own, but I think a check is a good habit to get in.
As far as "image" goes, I personally don't care whether someone thinks I'm a "geek" for being safe. It's my life and I'm going to protect it. If others want to look cool burning in, fine.
If you stay in the habit of doing gear checks, once you are one of the "experienced" skydivers, you'll be a good example for the newbies. And this is good for the sport in general.
if you feel you want a gear check before boarding, get one. a gear check has never killed anyone, complacency, on the other hand...and if some jumpers don't want to give you a gear check, you're asking the wrong people. I would never roll my eyes if someone asked for a gear check, no matter how busy I might be. And you should always ask for a pin check before exit, in case you accidently dislodged a pin, but don't check someone else's gear without asking them first. I had a experienced (over 1000 jumps) jumper give me a pin check and then could not figure out how to close my main pin flap. luckily I was belly-flying that jump and did not need my flap a closed as it can be ( A racer with velcro + tuck tabs)