Forums: Skydiving: Safety and Training:
what caused this malfunction?

 


kelly  (C License)

Oct 21, 2001, 5:50 PM
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what caused this malfunction? Can't Post

tonight a girl at the dz had the weirdest malfunction. On the ground we saw her at around 1,000 feet, nothing landable over her head, just a pilot chute out. Her reserve fired/or she pulled... either way she was in cypres territory. Next thing we see is her under a good reserve around 700 feet, with her stuff trailing behind her.. from what it looked like on the ground it seemed like it was her main, not inflated at all. it looked too big to be her bridal/ pilot chute, but than again, ive never seen an uniflated/uncutaway main that low before, so it just could have been her bridal and pilot chute looking huge.. so the main released from the risers at about 700 feet, she turned, and basically landed seconds later.
shes fairly new, and doesnt own her own gear yet, so she was a bit confused too, and worked up.
when they recovered the main and brought it in the hanger it was out of the bag, but im not sure if somebody pulled it out.. Her pilot chute was knotted. yes, knotted, as in in a knot. She uses a throw out, and its got the orange handle, not the hackey. The orange handle had somehow worked its way around the pilot chute and knotted it, no bridal was included in this knot, strictly the P.C. , and it was about halfway up the PC.
were not sure if she initiated a cutaway that didnt activate (older gear, 3 ring might have had some 'memory' to it) right away then deployed her reserve or if she deployed reserve, it opened and then she cutaway.
in any case, my question is: has anyone hear of a pilot chute knotting itself up? maybe a hesitation at full arm extention that allowed the bridal to loop up?
she had a packer pack for her, but her packer distinctly recalls how she stowed the PC. she swears she didnt do anything differently. She is completely convinced that she didnt pack this mal.
TO me it seems packer induced, shoving the PC in by the handle, the handle pushes between two parts of the PC.. she deploys, the pull of that tightens the knot.... but then the hestitation scenario was brought up.
im wondering because ive never hear of anything like this, let alone actually seen it in front of my own eyes. I dont think i would have believed it if i didnt see it, but sure enough, that handle had somehow worked its way between the PC material and caused it to knot up.
so have you heard of this? seen this? experienced it? what causes it? what scenario do you think caused it?



"i can not attest to what i did, just what i remember...."
~me, after one too many


kelly  (C License)

Oct 21, 2001, 6:21 PM
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Re: what caused this malfunction? [In reply to] Can't Post

seems i may have worded something incorrectly.
The bridal was obviously involved in this malfunction. but the bridal was not knotted around the PC. the PC was knotted around itself. It seemed like the handle found a way to get inbtween two pieces of PC material and then that knot tightened. but the bridal wasnt around any part of the knot or the PC. i saw it, held it , examined it, stared at it in confusion with a rigger right beside me, before the PC was messed with in anyway.
so the bridal did play a big part in this, but it wasnt knotted around it which makes me wonder how a PC could knot around itself...

"i can not attest to what i did, just what i remember...."
~me, after one too many


Premier billvon  (D 16479)
Moderator
Oct 21, 2001, 9:39 PM
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Re: what caused this malfunction? [In reply to] Can't Post

>in any case, my question is: has anyone hear of a pilot chute knotting itself up? maybe a hesitation at full arm extention that
> allowed the bridal to loop up?

Yes, I've seen it. It most commonly manifests itself as a mysterious knot in the bridle. I used to see them quite a bit on ripcord activated student mains. Even saw one that nearly caused a mal, where the PC launched, got stuck in the burble, had the bridle get knotted around it, then finally found the air. It caused enough drag that the main deployed (very slowly) and we later watched the video in amazement. Had that been a throwout, that could well have been a mal.

The best defense against this is a good PC throw. A lazy PC throw can allow the PC to get on your back, where it spins, flips, bounces and generally gets messed around thoroughly before it finally finds its way clear. It can cause slow deployment, knots in your bridle, knots in your PC, and in extreme cases, PC-in-tow malfunctions - as the jumper you saw discovered.

-bill von


kelly  (C License)

Oct 21, 2001, 10:33 PM
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Re: what caused this malfunction? [In reply to] Can't Post

billvon,
thankyou. some people had said "im sure it has happened before." but hearing someone actually say "yeah, ive heard where it happened before" just seems a bit more um..not believeable cause i saw the results, something obviously went wrong, but a bit more um, likely. thats it, likely.
its just so odd that her bridal didnt wrap. it was like her PC was just tied in a knot, simple as that. but it wasnt that simple. Tommorrow im going to ask the riggers to show me how this could have happened. they demonstrated it tongiht but i missed that... if i learn anything new ill let you guys know!
thanks billvon.
kel

"i can not attest to what i did, just what i remember...."
~me, after one too many



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