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jakebaustin

Incidents from Jumping a CYPRESS that is overdue for Maintenance

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On 3/8/2019 at 3:40 PM, wolfriverjoe said:

I don't think a rigger can 'have the repack expire' at a specified date. 


The rig is presumed airworthy for 180 days after the date of the repack. 
Obviously, if something gets damaged, or a time controlled part of the rig (the AAD) 'times out', then the rig is no longer airworthy and cannot legally be used. 

But I have never heard of a rigger having the ability to alter the interval and say "This repack expires at this time due to..." 

 

Note -  I don't pretend to be an expert, and I could certainly be wrong on this. I welcome correction if so.

 

22 hours ago, skytribe said:

The rig certainly is not presumed airworthy for 180 days.   It is presumed airworthy at the time it is inspected/packed.   

If the owner goes out and spills battery acid on it 10 minutes after he leaves my loft then it is unairworthy.

Clearly marking the packing data card that an AAD expires on a given date and should not be considered compliant/airworthy at that point I don't consider as unreasonable.    If the owner is having card inspected at DZ and this is marked clearly - then the DZ employee can record this date as expiry.   When that date arrives they can check to see if the AAD has been removed or replaced.

 

Ok, I guess I should have phrased that differently. I thought I addressed the 'battery acid' scenario with the 'obviously if something gets damaged' part.


Back to my point - A rig is legal to jump for 180 days from the repack date, presuming it is maintained in an airworthy condition.

Is there any way a rigger could shorten that? Short of putting an earlier date on the card to make it look like it's due for another repack sooner than it should be?
I'm not aware of any. 
But I've been wrong before.

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On 3/9/2019 at 4:15 PM, wolfriverjoe said:

.... putting an earlier date on the card to make it look like it's due for another repack sooner than it should be?

 

That sounds like it's getting into fuzzy legal territory, like postdating a check. Doesn't the FAA view packing data cards as legal documents? I get the willies when I even see one signed in ink other than black or blue, lol.

I don't like packing rigs when the AAD will be due for service before the repack expires, but I've done it, making a note on the data card saying something like "Cypres requires service before xx/xx/xxxx." Overall, I've found that almost all customers are happy to plan their AAD service at the repack, because they'd rather save the ten or twenty bucks it would cost to remove/reclose, then install/reclose - they just need a little help remembering and planning, and it's easier (less hassle) to comply with service requirements on your regular repack schedule than not.

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On 3/6/2019 at 8:37 PM, jakebaustin said:

I am not jumping a AAD that hasn't been sent in for maintenance, I am just curious. Have there have been any incidents where a Cypress that was past its maintenance due date malfunctioned before during or after a Skydive? And if so, does anyone have links with information? I Don't need an explanation on what ifs and what is legal or not. Simply looking for incidents where a jumper with a due for maintenance CYPRESS had a malfunction(misfire) specifically as a result of the AAD being overdue for Maintenance and not functioning properly. Thanks! 

The biggest problem in this forum is that when you ask a very specific question like you did, and even though you said you don't care about the legal issues, people can't simply answer your question. Didn't take long before the first person said, you can't pack it according to the rules. Then somebody else steps in with his opinion on the rules.....and then the fight starts. And the thing is, they might talk about the rules of different countries. Further down the road, somebody will start a brand war. 5 months later and 375 posts about all of the above, someone might actually answer your question. Good luck!

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On ‎3‎/‎7‎/‎2019 at 11:55 AM, mark said:

Can you tell me the reasoning (besides fear of lawsuits) that led your rigger to his conclusion?

--Mark

Because his view was he was certifying the rig is airworthy for 120 days. He took the conservative approach on things, which I can't fault. No need to debate this.

As well, from my view, there's no guarantee a person is going to come back for the AAD maintenance. See above on conservative approach. No need to debate this.

It's just a lot easier to not make deviations for sake of jumper convenience. Marking the data card with a special notation that the AAD is out of date prior to the repack cycle means little. Is a DZ going to notice that? Which date are they going to put on the waiver, the pack date, the date the AAD expires or both? DZ jumper mgmt software calculates rig service time based on repack date. It could make things confusing. Simpler to just do things one way. Rig comes in for repack. Will the AAD expire within the repack cycle? If yes, then AAD is serviced accordingly. Upon completion of service, repack rig and give back to customer. Easy peasy. I would allow for one deviation, though. If the AAD service will take an inordinate amount of time, etc, offer the option to repack the rig without it, then install it when it comes back.

If you do everything you can to put yourself beyond reproach, even if you would <technically> be in the clear, then you can sleep easier, not just because of fear of lawsuits. As well, you earn the respect of others that you do things by the book, like my rigger did of me.

“I will be sure – always.”

http://www.fortcampbellcourier.com/news/article_ca747ab4-665b-11e2-989c-0019bb2963f4.html

 

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That 1990s accident occurred at Pitt Meadows. The Cypres 1 batteries were more than 2 years old overdue for replacement. Like most overdue batteries, they still had enough power to do the usual start-up routine. A rigger advised her that it would be perfectly legal to jump if she left the Cypres turned off. 

She struggled with an unfamiliar pull-out all the way to impact.

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3 hours ago, cjdskydiver said:

Because his view was he was certifying the rig is airworthy for 120 days.

 

Well that's the 1st issue - The airworthiness of the rig is certified at that time only. 

Even if he says 120 days then he is out of date with current regulations for modern sport rigs in the US.  With is now 180 days.

3 hours ago, cjdskydiver said:

It's just a lot easier to not make deviations for sake of jumper convenience. Marking the data card with a special notation that the AAD is out of date prior to the repack cycle means little. Is a DZ going to notice that? Which date are they going to put on the waiver, the pack date, the date the AAD expires or both? DZ jumper mgmt software calculates rig service time based on repack date. It could make things confusing.

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Well, that's really not my concern about how the DZ records things or their software works.   My (as a rigger) responsibility is to pack according to the manufacturer and regulations.   Perhaps if a dropzone can't notice the special notation on the card - then they need someone else who can notice it when checking gear.

The owner is clearly notified of the date for servicing (in fact I let them know the repack before and let them know that scheduling in the window (+-6months) over the winter months when they are probably not using it).   A month or two is probably not going to make a huge difference - considering the +-6month window.   

However the regulations in the US don't stop me from packing an AAD that will require maintenance or expire within the cycle - but it does (or should) prevent people from jumping such gear.  That responsibility falls on the DZ/Owner.

 

 

 

 

Edited by skytribe
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On 3/8/2019 at 10:09 PM, TommyM said:

Does the status of the AAD affect the airworthiness of the rig or pack job?

No - but that's the wrong question.

Does a reserve repack that goes 181 days instead of 180 affect the rig or the pack job?  Not really.  Several manufacturers (including PD) have stated that if the repack interval were extended to 360 days they would be OK with it.

It's not whether or not the rig is safe; that's a separate question.  I can give plenty of examples of 100% legal and hideously dangerous gear vs. a system that is illegal to jump, but is perfectly safe.  The question is - are you following the FAR's?  

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9 hours ago, riggerrob said:

That 1990s accident occurred at Pitt Meadows. The Cypres 1 batteries were more than 2 years old overdue for replacement. Like most overdue batteries, they still had enough power to do the usual start-up routine. A rigger advised her that it would be perfectly legal to jump if she left the Cypres turned off. 

She struggled with an unfamiliar pull-out all the way to impact.

And now a jumper who is whistling in can think to themselves, "Boy... I'm glad my AAD battery is only 13 years old" lol.. Batteries are cheep IMO :D

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On 3/9/2019 at 9:27 AM, TommyM said:

Thanks Mark, I understand now, so if an AAD is installed in a solo rig then it’s considered part of the reserve system and is now controlled by the FAA regulations.

Kinda, but not quite... it is not TSO'ed, and they don't exert any other control over it other than stating that if present, you have to follow the mfg requirements.

(since we're all getting picky)

FWIW - I take a middle road on the question - I agree that the rig is airworthy until the moment it leaves my loft.  Then it is 100% up to the owner/operator.  BUT, in the interest of protecting the health (physical, mental and legal) of both myself and my customer, I work with them to ensure we don't need to put the Cypres in if it will go out of date+6mo, within the next FAA mandated I&R cycle.  (it helps I'm mostly working with repeat/regular customers who believe that this is a life-saving device they might need on a bad day, not a DZ mandated money pit)

 

JW

 

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