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Ron

Re: USPA responsibility for suicides [was: tandem incident]

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ChrisD2.0

this idea that without tandems,...

"Gotta subsidies the fun jumps somehow. No tandems, no skydiving."

I hear this line every week, mostly from individuals that haven't been around long,....




Sorry man, this simply isn't true.

This is the bullshite , con, that the USPA and many Dz's want you to believe.

It's too bad that so many buy into this.



It isn’t a con, the money isn’t there just utilizing fun jumpers. It could be there if the price or jump tickets went up. They would have to go up even more for smaller DZ that don’t have the volume. It’s basic economics.

You also didn’t address any of my previous comments on your post.

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There were DZs before tandems and there would be DZs without tandems. Yes, there would be fewer and with smaller aircraft. And much less money for instructors. It worked before, static line and IAD would become common again.

But it would be a very different scene from what we know now.

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>Yes, true. But where do TIs come from?

From the upjumpers. But there will always be enough of them to support tandem needs.

Consider that there are about 40,000 active skydivers in the US. (Probably more, because that's USPA's number for total members.) How many active TM's are there? A thousand? You could cut the number of active jumpers by a factor of 10 and still have enough to cover needs. Sure, you'd have to pay them more, give them better perks, maybe pay for all their training and cert jumps - but the bodies will be there to support that sort of moneymaking.

I did about 500 tandems before I called it quits. I got a lot more out of teaching AFF, the money was the same, and AFF was a lot easier on my body overall. If they doubled the pay for tandems? I would have done a lot more before I stopped, because back then I needed the money.

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gowlerk

There were DZs before tandems and there would be DZs without tandems. Yes, there would be fewer and with smaller aircraft. And much less money for instructors. It worked before, static line and IAD would become common again.

But it would be a very different scene from what we know now.



Of course when I say that I mean it with the intent of growing the sport and maintaining the quality of "life" we currently have.

Bill- Needing the money is a good point. Skydiving is expensive and when I started I was a broke college kid and becoming a TX was a good way to make skydiving more affordable with a low paying job. Now I work as an engineer and have a masters degree. The motivation just isn't there anymore since I make normal money now.

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Yes, skydivers always talk about "growing the sport". Why? Same reason we all try to talk our friends into skydiving when we are just starting. We fail to realize that it is a fringe activity that contributes little to anyone but ourselves. Skydiving does not need to to grow. And with the popularity of wind tunnels it will probably grow even less because it is not needed. The only reason the world needs DZs now is as a gateway into the world of wingsuit BASE and proximity flying!

Forgive me if I ramble a little this evening. I'm imbibing in a glass of The Low Flyer.

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gowlerk

Yes, skydivers always talk about "growing the sport". Why? Same reason we all try to talk our friends into skydiving when we are just starting. We fail to realize that it is a fringe activity that contributes little to anyone but ourselves. Skydiving does not need to to grow. And with the popularity of wind tunnels it will probably grow even less because it is not needed. The only reason the world needs DZs now is as a gateway into the world of wingsuit BASE and proximity flying!

Forgive me if I ramble a little this evening. I'm imbibing in a glass of The Low Flyer.




Your forgiven. I was recently at Niagra the other day, checking on the repairs to one of Gary Speers originials. remember him?

You should see and ask his opinions of what tunnels have done to skydiving.

As far as everyone else, were dealing with people of limited experience, intelligence, and extremely financially motivated. Fully 80% IMO of the heavey posters here have a vested and financial interest in ensuring their opinions get heard. If you know what I mean, and I know exactly you know what I mean.

Which is why this post has morphed and changed,....to distract and deflect from the idea that tandem gear has inherent issues. Once again the point of suicide gets raised because this is the "PREFFERED" explanation, as compared with the status quo. Once again, back to my points that you can, and you can easily fall out of any harness. There's a reason military and emergency parachutes, as well as gear that was part of flight crew standard ops was miserable to wear, our manufacturers , led by the USPA and PIA pressure from it's leadership morphed gear into something comfortable, but again, dangerous under certain circumstances.

I love that you point out the fallacy of the logic of so many that skydiving needs to grow.

Too many people in skydiving today that shouldn't be here. Too many that are spoon fed by a money hungry machine consisting of those with conflicts and self interests.

It's too bad that so many with agendas continue to spout forth the same dribble and conjecture.

I can tell you from personal experience and past history, the USPA's response to a non-members recent incident, is viewed by the powers to be as solely a power grab to ensure dominance and control considering the FAA's "memorandum of understanding." The fact that tandem operations are NOT under anyone's sole regulatory control, and the duty of certain government agencies to "protect the public from faulty amusement park type "rides," has not gone un-noticed.

It's high time the public be protected from unsupervised and unstable individuals, it's obvious that a Class III medical certificate is not enough to protect the public. It's obvious that commercial tandem operations that advertise thrill rides to the general public , and considering the DUI and drug issues over the last few years, that tandem operations are out of control, the USPA has lost control, that's if they ever had control in the first place. Which will result if ,...at a minimum more through background checks, a through investigation into the finances of how this under the table and cottage industry is paying these same "professionals," an investigation by the states and the Fed into the fact that withholding and other workman compensation laws are being fully complied with, as well as including the same standards applied to the backgrounds and fitness of pilots holding Class one medical certificates, and this is just the start of the consequences of kamikaze tandem operations.

So good luck interpreting the cause of this suicide. Not a fucking one of you has considered the ramifications of your witch hunt mentality.
Brett Bickford Did Not Commit Suicide.

He is the victim of ignorance and faulty gear. AND as in the movie: "12 Angry Men," of an ignorant and callous jury.

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Quote

Which is why this post has morphed and changed,....to distract and deflect from the idea that tandem gear has inherent issues. Once again the point of suicide gets raised because this is the "PREFFERED" explanation, as compared with the status quo. Once again, back to my points that you can, and you can easily fall out of any harness.



What are the inherent issues with tandem gear? A person cannot easily fall out of a tandem harness with a passenger. I tried it in a hanging harness with a passenger. It is not easy but is possible if there is a deliberate effort.

ChrisD2.0

So good luck interpreting the cause of this suicide. Not a fucking one of you has considered the ramifications of your witch hunt mentality.



Whats the ramifications of our "which hunt mentality" since we say this was a suicide?

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gowlerk

Yes, skydivers always talk about "growing the sport". Why? Same reason we all try to talk our friends into skydiving when we are just starting. We fail to realize that it is a fringe activity that contributes little to anyone but ourselves. Skydiving does not need to to grow. And with the popularity of wind tunnels it will probably grow even less because it is not needed. The only reason the world needs DZs now is as a gateway into the world of wingsuit BASE and proximity flying!

Forgive me if I ramble a little this evening. I'm imbibing in a glass of The Low Flyer.



I talk about growing the sport because it makes skydiving better. More jumpers means more demand for jump tickets. This means the need for a bigger plane.

I would like for skydiving to stick around for as long as I can do it and would like for future generations to be able to do it as well. I want skydiving to grow because I don't want it to die and I want the quality to increase.

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In terms of growing skydiving, I would say the advent of AFF has actually led to a reduction in numbers doing their first jump solo.

Offset a little I guess, by the numbers experiencing skydiving via tandem. The advent of wind tunnels may have a positive effect on student numbers as well.

When bungy jumping first started in NZ, there was concern that it would take away the numbers from skydiving, but in fact the opposite proved true. We saw an increase in student numbers after that developed.

I'd say if AFF was the only way to experience skydiving, the sport would be on its last legs by now. Simply down to cost and complexity.

As an example, my largest ever class of first jump students (SL) was a group of 70. Splitting that into smaller groups, it took 4 evenings during the week to train them, with one jumpmaster helping me, and with a perfect weekend of weather, we got all out the door, a few even doing a second jump.

It would take a long time for two people to do that via AFF.

And I trained many groups of 20, 30, 40 over the years, and in total I trained and jumped over 10,000 first jump students.

Now sure, many of them didn't go beyond their first jump, but quite a few did, who became Instructors, TIs, and riggers. I know of at least five who became DZOs. Those kind of numbers would be impossible if AFF was the only option. At one point 25% of A licences issued in NZ were from my operation.

Sure there are bigger and better aircraft these days, but in many cases this has not been a benefit to sport jumping. I know a few Tandem operations where you need a C licence at least, to do solo jumps. Sport jumping is actively discouraged.
My computer beat me at chess, It was no match for me at kickboxing....

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billvon

>Yes, true. But where do TIs come from?

From the upjumpers. But there will always be enough of them to support tandem needs.

Consider that there are about 40,000 active skydivers in the US. (Probably more, because that's USPA's number for total members.)



It depends on how you define 'active'. I wouldent call someone an active skydiver just because they happen to have a valid membership. I think if you dont make at least 30 jumps a year, then I am not sure you're really active. That's basically just one Saturday every three months. If you use that standard, I would think the number is well under what you quoted. If you define active as someone who jumps most weekends and does say 200 jumps per year, then I bet the number is under 10,000 and many of them probably work in the industry.

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As a doctor I know it's not a requirement for commiting suicide to have a mental lapse or mental condition. It is usually situational and like a crime can be executed by anyone at anytime.
To think you are gonna prevent that from occurring is as naive as thinking banning guns will stop gun mass crimes.
The USPA is an amazing organization and they're always concerned with how can they help and.prevent this sort of thing.
It's just not possible so let's wake up here!

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I can tell you from personal experience and past history, the USPA's response to a non-members recent incident, is viewed by the powers to be as solely a power grab to ensure dominance and control considering the FAA's "memorandum of understanding." The fact that tandem operations are NOT under anyone's sole regulatory control, and the duty of certain government agencies to "protect the public from faulty amusement park type "rides," has not gone un-noticed. 

 

ChrisD, Do you ever read what you post?????

FARs §105.45   Use of tandem parachute systems.

 

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Ron Bell talks about the new AAD BSR here:

https://www.skydive-tv.com/pia-symposium-2019-ron-bell/

 

UPT talks a bit about it here as well (4:55):

https://www.skydive-tv.com/pia-symposium-2019-tom-noonan-upt/

These USPA conspiracy theories are getting a bit ridiculous. Tabulating statistical data on incidents is a core function of improving safety in every single industry in existence. There are people who's entire careers are solely to run statics on incidents and determine outcomes--it is in itself a career field.

Many of the safety improvements that have occurred to products and practices over the years have come directly from analyzing statistical data obtained from incident reports. Detailed and comprehensive reports allow people to better understand legitimate, real-world risks and their applicability to certain situations and conditions. Likewise, a complete lack of reporting leaves little more than random guessing which will never further the advancement of anything. 

Edited by 20kN
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