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skydived19006

Rich Winstock Swoop Incident Cover-Up

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I'm not a USPA member, so this is maybe worth what you paid for it. But:

BigBearCards

If they aren't doing something right, ELECT DIFFERENT BOARD MEMBERS instead of bashing them.



An important part of democracy is public discussion. How else will we make the call about how to vote? We are not just unconnected individuals making perfectly-informed decisions for ourselves in isolation. We are a society.

In the same way that a free press is a critical plank of a real democracy, this kind of public discussion about elected officials is vital. Your vote is one thing, but if you really want change you often need to convince other people to vote the same way.

You do not vote in isolation.
--
"I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan

"You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?

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I've seen (as in I was there) no seat belts on take off, loose camera helmets on the floor with him sitting close and knowing, his buddies doing head down tandems, swooping spectator areas.
Other nuances like taking off with door half opened ...
These are the reasons I won't frequent any dropzones he runs or works as s&ta.
Hi behavior is parallel with that in his prior job that followed by conviction (but the conviction part obviously won't happen here)
For those interested it's not that hard to google Richard Winstock.

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I'm not going to defend Rich, tho what you're alleging is different behavior than I've seen at the few DZ's we've been to at the same time. However, it seems pretty clear this was a major screw up. Brain-fart or consistent behavior that got him bit? I don't know. I'll take you at your word for what you've seen because I know you're a standup guy.

However, how is it you'll jump with organizers that have been pre-warned that their actions were dangerous, and said actions indeed result in multiple fatalities at different times? Or the organizers that put a weed-stoned newbie on a vertical load above my head, costing me my left ear when his knee impacted me? Isn't this the same conversation?

Where does one draw the line? Is it at safety or politics? In this case, it's _all_ politics as far as I'm concerned.

I'm still awaiting Doug_Davis' explanation of how he's experienced Rich's previous behaviors. My money says he got the same anonymous email from a USPA BOD member that several other people received.
Doug?

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NWFlyer

But expecting diddly squat from USPA... nah. I'm with you on that.

I pay my dues so the USPA can try to keep the FAA off my back. I feel that's their most important mission.

I also feel they provide some kind of structure to our student programs. I wouldn't like to see the void if they quit training and certifying instructors. How effectively they do that is always debatable, but at least there's some kind of program.

As far as safety, we have to remember that the USPA has as much legal jurisdiction as the Boy Scouts of America. They can tear up your ratings and ban you from "their" DZ's, but they can't ban you from jumping or fine you.

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Joellercoaster

I'm not a USPA member, so this is maybe worth what you paid for it. But:

***If they aren't doing something right, ELECT DIFFERENT BOARD MEMBERS instead of bashing them.



An important part of democracy is public discussion. How else will we make the call about how to vote? We are not just unconnected individuals making perfectly-informed decisions for ourselves in isolation. We are a society.

In the same way that a free press is a critical plank of a real democracy, this kind of public discussion about elected officials is vital. Your vote is one thing, but if you really want change you often need to convince other people to vote the same way.

You do not vote in isolation.


:D :D The U.S. Is an Oligarchy Not a Democracy ~ the organization in question is a 'non-profit' oversight committee with zero power of enforcement.

In fact there's actually less than zero power of enforcement if you'll recall the Skyride 'incident'... :S


Again let me preface by saying I'm not defending Rich Winstock ~ what I am dismayed at is the eat our own mob mentality that seems to happen every time one of 'us' screws up. :|

You say 'public discussion' - THIS is a public lynching. :ph34r:


Let's take a quick look at the Email Martian received...



Are you aware USPA National Director Rich Winstock swooped a spectator area and hit a spectator putting her in the hospital for 6-7 days?

~Yes I am

Are you aware there is a very good chance USPA may be sued over this?

~Really? SO the USPA may be sued over an injury incident...happened before IIRC. In today's shotgun approach deep pocket lawsuit mentality it wouldn't surprise me - do you have any actual details or does the 'may be' disclaimer cover any & all comments meant to inflame?

Are you aware this is not the first time Rich Winstock has disregarded safety and swooped spectators?

~Nope, wasn't aware of that...hope he now seeing the bad side of doing that.

Are you aware there are other safety incidents committed by Rich Winstock with no consequences?

~Specifics Bob...

Are you aware Rich Winstock is the Chair of USPA Safety and Training? REALLY??

~Yes I am...REALLY I am!

Are you aware there were calls for him to step down from his position as the Chair of Safety and Training from both inside and outside of the USPA Board?

~You mean like the Skyride thing? Gee, these 'step down' calls get interesting.

Are you aware the president of USPA Sherry Butcher is attempting to cover it up?

~Define cover-up and show me undeniable / verifiable PROOF that Sherry Butcher is involved in a 'cover up' regarding an injury incident...since we all KNOW about the incident, she must not be doing a good job covering it...

Are you aware Sherry Butcher stated she feels it "was unfortunate" and "rich regrets it"?

~Ummm...it WAS unfortunate & though I haven't heard it from Rich - I just BET he regrets it! What's your point?

Are you aware Sherry wrote that the membership does not know or care who is on the board or chair of any committee? Really?

~Yes, I too have seen that 'private email', considering the average voter turn out fir USPA elections - I'd say she's probably RIGHT!

Are you aware that Sherry decided to keep Rich as Chair of the S&T Committee as if nothing ever happened? WTF? She even stated she would do the same for anyone let alone a Board Member. What? A Board member gets extra consideration? Especially a Board member???? OMG!

~What am I missing here...Sherry said she would do the same for anyone - how does that play into 'special consideration' exactly?

Rich should have stepped down immediately instead of begging Sherry to keep him as Chair. And Sherry should have taken action rather than trying to cover it up. The time for him to step down from the Chairmanship has come and gone. He now needs to step down from the Board. And while we are at it, Sherry should step down as well. Her poor handling of this and her attempt to cover it up is inexcusable.

~Whenever I see statements like this I tend to question the veracity...'Begging' - how do you know what was said? 'Cover up' - show me the money!

Sherry should also make public the e-mail she wrote regarding this issue. Why would she not do this?

~Ummm, because it was a private email? Can we see all of your private emails please?

Call your Regional Director and the National Directors or e-mail them and tell them enough is enough. Here is where you can find their e-mail and phone numbers:

~Yup, get involved! But find out the facts before deciding to 'demand' anything...otherwise ya end up looking stooopid.










~ If you choke a Smurf, what color does it turn? ~

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I can certainly understand your point Twardo.

Other USPA officials have fucked up badly before. Look at the Danny Page incident, where he did a 270 hook turn right through traffic after a big way and took himself and Bob Holler out in a double fatality. I can't remember if he was a regional or national director, but he had been an arrogant I'll-do-it-my-way hotshot for some time up to that point.

You look at their history prior to the incident. If they'd been clean and not done anything crazy and then did something out of character, I might not be so harsh....
"Mediocre people don't like high achievers, and high achievers don't like mediocre people." - SIX TIME National Champion coach Nick Saban

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Quote

Hi behavior is parallel with that in his prior job that followed by conviction (but the conviction part obviously won't happen here)



...and it's just such comments that solidify in my mind anyway, the 'witch hunt' sewing circle hand wringing defame at any cost - bandwagon I see picking up speed with nobody driving.

Rich was convicted of a crime?
SO WHAT?! :ph34r: Who hasn't been...:$

The only thing THAT tells me is he should have gotten a better lawyer - I hear with the RIGHT shark in your corner ~ Hell, ya can get away with murder. ;)










~ If you choke a Smurf, what color does it turn? ~

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>As for Rich's mistake - he made a mistake. Everyone criticizing him has never
>made a mistake while jumping, right?

?? Not at all. I've made plenty of mistakes. They have cost me places on bigway record attempts, gotten me grounded and cost me a lot of money over the years. I have paid these penalties as part of the cost of learning - even though I have never put anyone in the hospital as a result of a mistake I made. As a skydiver I expect there to be consequences to my actions.

>SO FEW members actually vote, so it would be REALLY EASY to get organized
>and get the board changed. If you DIDN'T VOTE for the board, then you have
>absolutely NO RIGHT to complain.

Most of the board are good people, people I have worked with and (often) voted for. I've talked to several of them and they are also surprised as to how this worked out. A few aren't.

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Remster

Quote

About a year and a half later I called Sherry Butcher to see how it was being implemented. I think she thought I was a DZO asking how to implement it. She said "oh, don't worry about that. Just tell people to be careful."



First I hear about that... Wow....



Right? That's disgraceful.

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normiss

I have to fully agree with this perspective.
This isn't about his personal life in any way.



I would tell Rich I have no problem if he gets back on the horse and keeps skydiving. Just don't do that stupid swooping the spectator shit again. I would still say he shouldn't serve in his capacity on the USPA board, thats all. There should be consequences that should matter.

And I'm not infallible either. I've made my share of mistakes. I believe I'm a better person because of them, and there are other areas of my life that have room for improvement too.
"Mediocre people don't like high achievers, and high achievers don't like mediocre people." - SIX TIME National Champion coach Nick Saban

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billvon

>As for Rich's mistake - he made a mistake. Everyone criticizing him has never
>made a mistake while jumping, right?

?? Not at all. I've made plenty of mistakes. They have cost me places on bigway record attempts, gotten me grounded and cost me a lot of money over the years. I have paid these penalties as part of the cost of learning - even though I have never put anyone in the hospital as a result of a mistake I made. As a skydiver I expect there to be consequences to my actions.

>SO FEW members actually vote, so it would be REALLY EASY to get organized
>and get the board changed. If you DIDN'T VOTE for the board, then you have
>absolutely NO RIGHT to complain.

Most of the board are good people, people I have worked with and (often) voted for. I've talked to several of them and they are also surprised as to how this worked out. A few aren't.



Dennis McGlynn made one mistake that caused no injuries. He was banned for life from USPA. So it appears USPA has a zero-tolerance policy.... if it ain't one of their own.

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>the 'witch hunt' sewing circle hand wringing defame at any cost - bandwagon I see
>picking up speed with nobody driving.

A "witch hunt" is a search for someone who did nothing wrong so you can blame them for something. In this case no one (including Rich) disputes that Rich did something very wrong and put a bystander in the hospital.

Now, if you want to blame someone ELSE for what he did, that would be a witch hunt.

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normiss

IMO, the entire incident and the handling of it tells me that safety is NOT a concern nor priority for the USPA.
So, safety third IS accurate.
I'm over it.
I'm over trying to make safety an important part of our sport while the USPA doesn't care.
I'll stop being a safety Nazi, as it doesn't matter.
I could care less about the USPA any longer.
I won't vote again - for what?
If I wasn't forced to have the membership, I wouldn't.

Have fun out there kids.



I'm +1 with you on this, but then consider this:

The USPA is 2 parts. That hard working staff who DOES care about safety, and a board of "popular people" who are a mixed bag. IMO many of them do not have safety as their first priority. Most of them think they do, but when other considerations come into play they cave, many times to remain the "popular people", lest they not get re-elected.

What I'm saying to you is please vote. Vote them out and people who are not "popular" in.
----------------------------------------------
You're not as good as you think you are. Seriously.

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topdocker

***>As for Rich's mistake - he made a mistake. Everyone criticizing him has never
>made a mistake while jumping, right?

?? Not at all. I've made plenty of mistakes. They have cost me places on bigway record attempts, gotten me grounded and cost me a lot of money over the years. I have paid these penalties as part of the cost of learning - even though I have never put anyone in the hospital as a result of a mistake I made. As a skydiver I expect there to be consequences to my actions.

>SO FEW members actually vote, so it would be REALLY EASY to get organized
>and get the board changed. If you DIDN'T VOTE for the board, then you have
>absolutely NO RIGHT to complain.

Most of the board are good people, people I have worked with and (often) voted for. I've talked to several of them and they are also surprised as to how this worked out. A few aren't.



Dennis McGlynn made one mistake that caused no injuries. He was banned for life from USPA. So it appears USPA has a zero-tolerance policy.... if it ain't one of their own.

top

Excellent point.
----------------------------------------------
You're not as good as you think you are. Seriously.

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A similar accident grounded a Canadian skydiver about a decade ago. He was working as a videographer when he swooped a spectator. She had walked onto the parachute landing field (against DZ policy).
The videographer swooped so close that he broke her arm.
Despite having all the instructor ratings and being a former member of the Canadian 8-way team, he was fired.
AFAIK he has never worked at a Canadian DZ since then.

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billvon

>the 'witch hunt' sewing circle hand wringing defame at any cost - bandwagon I see
>picking up speed with nobody driving.

A "witch hunt" is a search for someone who did nothing wrong so you can blame them for something. In this case no one (including Rich) disputes that Rich did something very wrong and put a bystander in the hospital.

Now, if you want to blame someone ELSE for what he did, that would be a witch hunt.




Debateable semantics Bill...

~when the thread we're posting to proclaims:

Rich Winstock Swoop Incident Cover-Up

And no proof of such had been forthcoming I'd call it a bit of a hunt...

When we're being urged to google the guy in regard to a past 'conviction' that in reality has nothing to do with the incident being discussed & IMO is referenced ONLY as character assassination...I call it a bit Whichy. :ph34r:

ESPECIALLY since the 'conviction' part isn't really clear....:)










~ If you choke a Smurf, what color does it turn? ~

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>Rich Winstock Swoop Incident Cover-Up

I agree that the "cover-up" part isn't really supportable. If his statement in PARACHUTIST is published and there are a lot of facts he leaves out then I might be more inclined to believe that there's a cover-up. Until then it doesn't look like anyone is trying to hide anything (other than private emails, but no one should have any expectation that they have access to them.)

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Who here has actually called Sherry Butcher or anyone else involved with the investigation? Has anyone spoken to Rich Winstock to get his side of the story?
If its a "coverup", I'd expect someone here to say "I called and was told that it was secret information."

FWIW, I've spoken (not emailed) with several board members including the president and Rich Winstock.
I'm satisfied with the answers I received. According to those that did the investigation, there are many things not being shared here. Do your own homework.
It's mind-blowing that a BOD member dissatisfied with their findings chose to scream "FIRE" where there is none.

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"
I'm satisfied with the answers I received. According to those that did the investigation, there are many things not being shared here. Do your own homework.
It's mind-blowing that a BOD member dissatisfied with their findings chose to scream "FIRE" where there is none.

IYHO right??? Or do you know all that happened and can share?
tom #90 #54 #08 and now #5 with a Bronze :-)

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It is amazing to see when other lower class member causes mistakes they get punished, like 60 day suspension of all instructional ratings, and this guy Rich gets nothing.

He is still tandem I/E and aff I/E.

give Dennis his tandem rating back.
Bernie Sanders for President 2016

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