Forums: Skydiving: Safety and Training:
I finally understand how low turns can happen

 

First page Previous page 1 2 Next page Last page  View All

almeister112  (D 31305)

Jun 7, 2010, 9:28 PM
Post #1 of 45 (2892 views)
Shortcut
I finally understand how low turns can happen Can't Post

Being new to the sport, I've been somewhat surprised when I read reports of fatalities caused by low turns. I always thought, "Man, everybody knows low turns are a really bad idea; why the hell do people keep dying like this?"

Yesterday I finally understood. My first jump of the day had me under canopy with another jumper pretty far away but heading in my general direction, and I, being very paranoid about canopy collisions, made sure I kept plenty of distance between us. When it was getting time to enter the landing pattern, however, I realized that I was damn far from the landing area and knew I wouldn't make it back doing the regular pattern.

For just a second I thought, "Well, I can just beeline for the landing area for as long as possible, whip around right at the end, and land in the grass just fine." That thought was immediately followed by, "That's a truly terrible idea, and you'll kill yourself if you do crap like that." So I decided that the nearby desert was plenty welcoming and ended up making a nice landing in the dirt.

The only reason I mention this is that, at least for me (and I suspect for a lot of newer jumpers as well) these incident reports caused by pilot error seem incredibly remote and seem as though I couldn't possibly make the same mistakes. But it made me think: the vast majority of people in these reports knew a hell of a lot more about skydiving than I do, and I'm sure they weren't stupid; it's just easy to make a bad decision.

So I guess my point is I'm encouraged to know I could make the right decision, but it was sobering to realize how little things really do make a difference. I guess you guys really do know what you're talking about most of the time after all...

Blue skies


lowhook  (D 18667)

Jun 7, 2010, 9:44 PM
Post #2 of 45 (2824 views)
Shortcut
Re: [almeister112] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

Yup, it can be just that simple. A case of "get-back-itis" can become deadly. You recognized it early. Good job. You broke the chain before it hit critical mass and are here to tell us about it.


(This post was edited by lowhook on Jun 7, 2010, 9:45 PM)


JohnRich  (D License)

Jun 7, 2010, 9:48 PM
Post #3 of 45 (2820 views)
Shortcut
Re: [almeister112] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

You made your decision high enough to give you a safe option, and didn't wait until the last second to do something hasty and dangerous. Good for you!


ridestrong  (C 38471)

Jun 7, 2010, 10:34 PM
Post #4 of 45 (2790 views)
Shortcut
Re: [almeister112] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Yesterday I finally understood. My first jump of the day had me under canopy with another jumper pretty far away but heading in my general direction, and I, being very paranoid about canopy collisions, made sure I kept plenty of distance between us. When it was getting time to enter the landing pattern, however, I realized that I was damn far from the landing area and knew I wouldn't make it back doing the regular pattern.

Seems like you should be able to keep a safe distance from other jumpers without having to land off. There's a lack of details here, but I can't think of too many situations where a single jumper would cause me to change course enough to land off, given sufficient altitude etc...

What altitude were you at when you first encountered the other jumper? Your safe... but landing off can be quite dangerous (at some dz's more than others of course).


almeister112  (D 31305)

Jun 7, 2010, 10:45 PM
Post #5 of 45 (2782 views)
Shortcut
Re: [ridestrong] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

It's entirely true that I didn't need to end up as far away as I did just to avoid one jumper. I definitely overcompensated, and thinking about it now I probably could have changed course and been fine around 1500 ft or so. But I wasn't entirely sure what the other jumper was doing and I think focused too much on them and not enough on where I was setting myself up. Definitely something to learn from.

That said, I was in Eloy. I learned from several missed landings as a student that the vast tracts of desert surrounding the alternate landing area are really quite nice to land in, with plenty of large stretches of problem-free dirt.


(This post was edited by almeister112 on Jun 7, 2010, 10:47 PM)


mircan  (D 32291)

Jun 8, 2010, 4:56 AM
Post #6 of 45 (2661 views)
Shortcut
Re: [almeister112] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
It's entirely true that I didn't need to end up as far away as I did just to avoid one jumper. I definitely overcompensated, and thinking about it now I probably could have changed course and been fine around 1500 ft or so. But I wasn't entirely sure what the other jumper was doing and I think focused too much on them and not enough on where I was setting myself up. Definitely something to learn from.

Two days ago my friend crashed himself doing low turn. Broken arm and femur, severe head trauma, still in the ER... Frown
We don`t know why he did it, but it looked he made wrong decision too late. Trying to land in small crowded area, and avoiding the obstacles. 200+ jumps, wl~1.1/1.2, at least 80-100 under that canopy... Be careful. You have enough time to decide and plan your landing, don`t do it in last 30 feet. Unsure


AggieDave  (D License)

Jun 8, 2010, 5:09 AM
Post #7 of 45 (2652 views)
Shortcut
Re: [mircan] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
You have enough time to decide and plan your landing, don`t do it in last 30 feet.

It should be done before you get on the airplane!

Then if you have a variable present its self under canopy, you're not trying to adjust by the seat of your pants, you're simply adapting from your already decided plan. It helps increase your reaction time and it also helps promote good decision making while under canopy.


aussiechick  (D License)

Jun 8, 2010, 5:53 AM
Post #8 of 45 (2622 views)
Shortcut
Re: [almeister112] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

Good for you, don't let anyone make you feel bad for choosing an off DZ landing, rather than pushing a bad approach.

Better a long walk than a short ambulance ride.


ridestrong  (C 38471)

Jun 8, 2010, 6:52 AM
Post #9 of 45 (2585 views)
Shortcut
Re: [AggieDave] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Quote:
You have enough time to decide and plan your landing, don`t do it in last 30 feet.

It should be done before you get on the airplane!

I never plan my landings before I get on the plane... Chances are it will just result in 'a change of plans'. The wind at our dz tends to change direction with nearly every jump. You should be fully capable of effectively planning each landing after you are under canopy.

I can see where students would want to plan before getting on the plane, or someone jumping at a new dz... they just need to be prepared to CHANGE those plans.


DocPop  (C License)

Jun 8, 2010, 7:00 AM
Post #10 of 45 (2565 views)
Shortcut
Re: [ridestrong] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:

I never plan my landings before I get on the plane... Chances are it will just result in 'a change of plans'. The wind at our dz tends to change direction with nearly every jump. You should be fully capable of effectively planning each landing after you are under canopy.

I can see where students would want to plan before getting on the plane, or someone jumping at a new dz... they just need to be prepared to CHANGE those plans.

IMO this is a very dangerous attitude. You are jumping without a plan which makes you unpredictable to other jumpers.

It is true that no jump ever goes 100% as planned, but it is far better to be making minor adjustments to a plan under canopy than making it all up as you go. It leaves more of you attention to take care of unexpected issues such as jumpers without a plan coming at you out of nowhere.

I know exactly where I want to be over the ground at what altitude for each of the 3 key points in my pattern. Do I always hit those points at the right altitude? Hell no, but I have a plan and just because I am high at my entry point doesn't mean I can't adjust and be right back on course for my turn onto the base leg.

I would urge you to rethink your "no plan" attitude for the safety of you and others in the air.


mircan  (D 32291)

Jun 8, 2010, 7:01 AM
Post #11 of 45 (2563 views)
Shortcut
Re: [AggieDave] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Quote:
You have enough time to decide and plan your landing, don`t do it in last 30 feet.

It should be done before you get on the airplane!

Then if you have a variable present its self under canopy, you're not trying to adjust by the seat of your pants, you're simply adapting from your already decided plan. It helps increase your reaction time and it also helps promote good decision making while under canopy.

When i began jumping I jumped classic accuracy. With those kind of canopies and those type of jumps if you don`t plan ahead and know how to spot, you are screwed big-time. I learned the hard way how even if you have a plan, but you don`t adapt as conditions change, you could be in trouble. So I plan. Most people around me - don`t.
So I`m with you 100%.


ridestrong
Quote:
I never plan my landings before I get on the plane...
Too bad for you.


Premier NWFlyer  (D License)

Jun 8, 2010, 7:05 AM
Post #12 of 45 (2556 views)
Shortcut
Re: [ridestrong] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
Quote:
You have enough time to decide and plan your landing, don`t do it in last 30 feet.

It should be done before you get on the airplane!

I never plan my landings before I get on the plane... Chances are it will just result in 'a change of plans'. The wind at our dz tends to change direction with nearly every jump. You should be fully capable of effectively planning each landing after you are under canopy.

I can see where students would want to plan before getting on the plane, or someone jumping at a new dz... they just need to be prepared to CHANGE those plans.

The part I've bolded is in direct contrast to what's been taught in the canopy courses I've taken (Scott Miller's class back when Scott was still teaching, and a local class based on the Flight-1 curriculum). Having a plan in place before you get on the plane allows you to adjust your pattern as necessary rather than planning it from scratch. For a DZ where you jump regularly, that's probably already in your head based on knowledge of the regular situations, but there are always variables to consider each day at the DZ, and load-by-load.


(This post was edited by NWFlyer on Jun 8, 2010, 7:06 AM)


ILikePizza  (A 58143)

Jun 8, 2010, 7:36 AM
Post #13 of 45 (2521 views)
Shortcut
Re: [ridestrong] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

I understand the point of not planning your landing to the 'T' before you take off, but the critical part is understanding what your alternatives are.

At my DZ (cross keys, NJ) off landing opportunities are relatively limited. Especially if you want to land in grass and not a parking lot.

At the very least though, I know where I want to be, and I know I have at least a basic idea of what to do/where to go if I open too far from the landing area in any direction.


rnicks  (A License)

Jun 8, 2010, 9:19 AM
Post #14 of 45 (2460 views)
Shortcut
Re: [almeister112] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

Good lord, whatever you do, don't listen to ridestong. Landing off is perfectly acceptable answer to ANY landing situation in which you are not comfortable. And yes, even if it is to avoid one person. As you gain experience, you may find you can handle the same situation differently. But for now you thought that was the right decision for you. And you were ABSOLUTELY RIGHT! Good for you.


beowulf  (C License)

Jun 8, 2010, 9:22 AM
Post #15 of 45 (2457 views)
Shortcut
Re: [ridestrong] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

You should always be prepared to adjust your plan on each and every jump. But ALWAYS have a plan to start with.


dgskydive  (C 25738)

Jun 8, 2010, 9:25 AM
Post #16 of 45 (2448 views)
Shortcut
Re: [almeister112] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

Good lesson to learn and you didnt have to break anything to figure it out!! Great job.


dgskydive  (C 25738)

Jun 8, 2010, 9:31 AM
Post #17 of 45 (2437 views)
Shortcut
Re: [ridestrong] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I never plan my landings before I get on the plane

Bunches of people are going to tell you that is the wrong answer. I am one of them. Always plan your dive, everything from the way you get in the plane to the exit order, the dive itself and yes...........which way you are going to land. Even if the winds shift, you need to stick to that plan.

If you jump at a DZ that tends to have winds that shift a lot, then I would suggest that you learn to land downwind. With proper instruction of course. It may save your life one day. If they winds that day are to high for you to safely land down wind in those conditions than maybe you shouldn't get in the plane. Plan for the worst and hope for the best. If you cant handle the worst case scenario then again, don't get in the plane.


(This post was edited by dgskydive on Jun 8, 2010, 9:32 AM)


jdfreefly  (D 24037)

Jun 8, 2010, 9:35 AM
Post #18 of 45 (2429 views)
Shortcut
Re: [ridestrong] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

Do you actually believe the bullshit that you post or are you the worlds most efficient troll? I haven't really figured it out yet but you've consistently posted some of the most idiotic advice. I'm tempted to travel to your home DZ just to meet you and figure it out once and for all.

It's like you've taken 20 years of rules written in blood and re-written them in a way that is completely contrary to any thought for safety (or common sense).


humbled1  (C 37241)

Jun 8, 2010, 9:55 AM
Post #19 of 45 (2395 views)
Shortcut
Re: [ridestrong] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
Quote:
You have enough time to decide and plan your landing, don`t do it in last 30 feet.

It should be done before you get on the airplane!

I never plan my landings before I get on the plane... Chances are it will just result in 'a change of plans'. The wind at our dz tends to change direction with nearly every jump. You should be fully capable of effectively planning each landing after you are under canopy.

I can see where students would want to plan before getting on the plane, or someone jumping at a new dz... they just need to be prepared to CHANGE those plans.

I also jump at a DZ with constantly changing winds. Which is why in the main landing area it is "first man down" who sets the pattern. I am the opposite of you though, instead of NO PLAN, I have multiple plans. I look at the wind/windsocks before boarding and determine my holding area and landing pattern under the current conditions. Then after talking to others who have jumped that day, if it is my first jump, I visualize other possible patterns if the wind shifts on the ride to altitude. If it is the 1st load, there will be no wind most likely, which means land towards the lake. You had a plan to unsnap your helmet in case of a mal but no plan to land?

To the OP; you did great. It took me at least 100 jumps more than you to realize just because I CAN make it back to the main, that doesn't mean I SHOULD land in the main. A predictable landing pattern is extremely important (especially at a larger DZ such as the one I jump at!)


ridestrong  (C 38471)

Jun 8, 2010, 10:00 AM
Post #20 of 45 (2391 views)
Shortcut
Re: [NWFlyer] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

Ok, i suppose I could have worded that better. I guess after 130 jumps at the same landing area I just know what I'm going to do in general and don't "plan out" each landing.

It's not uncommon at Mile-Hi to have the winds blowing out of the East when you get on the plane and see them coming out of the West after your under canopy.

Don't get me wrong... there is absolutely nothing wrong with planning, but I still stand by my previous statement.:

"You should be fully capable of effectively planning each landing after you are under canopy.

I can see where students would want to plan before getting on the plane, or someone jumping at a new dz... they just need to be prepared to CHANGE those plans."

As for the the OP landing off, I'm sure they made the right decision. I was sent a PM that stated landing off at Eloy is not like landing off at other dz's. Landing off at other dz's will often mean dealing with other obsticles such as power lines, barbed-wire fences, ditches, trees, rocks, etc... My point was it sounded like the OP had the altitude to safely avoid the other jumper and still manage to land in the designated landing area. While making the decision to land off may be the safest option there are also added risks involved in that same decision.


rnicks  (A License)

Jun 8, 2010, 10:19 AM
Post #21 of 45 (2366 views)
Shortcut
Re: [ridestrong] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

With respect to your dzo and his rules, I think that's crap. If the winds are light enough to change that quickly, then they are light enough for you to take a downwinder easily. You should have a plan a stick to it. Especially students.


Premier billvon  (D 16479)
Moderator
Jun 8, 2010, 11:51 AM
Post #22 of 45 (2319 views)
Shortcut
Re: [rnicks] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

>If the winds are light enough to change that quickly, then they are light
>enough for you to take a downwinder easily.

Not true at many DZ's. We see radical and large changes in wind direction during summer afternoons at Perris.


Premier faulknerwn  (D 17441)
Moderator
Jun 8, 2010, 4:29 PM
Post #23 of 45 (2194 views)
Shortcut
Re: [billvon] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

I hate Perris for that reason! I've only ever done CRW there, but its always interesting because practically every time I've come into land there, every windsock points a different direction! Every major downwind landing I've ever done (i.e. not 1/2 mile an hour) was at Perris Valley landing off the airport.. I swear the winds just swirl in circles there.. I don't know regulars deal with it constantly!


ridestrong  (C 38471)

Jun 8, 2010, 9:47 PM
Post #24 of 45 (2112 views)
Shortcut
Re: [billvon] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
>If the winds are light enough to change that quickly, then they are light
>enough for you to take a downwinder easily.

Not true at many DZ's. We see radical and large changes in wind direction during summer afternoons at Perris.

Same goes for Mile-Hi... add the hot air and higher altitude and your going to want to avoid some of those downwinders.

I should add that everyone is to land in the same direction as the first person down, regardless of changes in wind direction once the pattern is set.


dgskydive  (C 25738)

Jun 10, 2010, 12:44 PM
Post #25 of 45 (1939 views)
Shortcut
Re: [ridestrong] I finally understand how low turns can happen [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
You should be fully capable of effectively planning each landing after you are under canopy

That is actually a good statement, but the big reason to have a plan and stick with it is. So everyone knows what to expect. Imagine you change your plan last second and the person behind you has no idea that you are about to change something. now you create a problem for them. these things build up and next thing you know you have people landing every which way someone gets hurt. HAVE A PLAN AND STICK TO IT!!!! If that means landing downwind then so be it. Again if you are not comfortable landing down or cross wind in the conditions that you take off under then you might want to rethink making that jump.


First page Previous page 1 2 Next page Last page  View All

Forums : Skydiving : Safety and Training

 


Search for (options)