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flyboy6554

Mandatory AAD's 2 (was: Franklin County fatality)

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skydived19006

It seems that there are a few fatalities every year caused by someone getting fixated and losing track of time/altitude. Trying to fix a spinning line twist malfunction is another one that people way too often get fixated on and end up low with limited options.

About a dozen years ago, I witnessed a skydiver who dislocated both shoulders falling on a building formation. He's walking the earth today because he had an AAD. I and a couple of other "old school guys" installed AADs in our containers shortly thereafter. Such a change of mindset over the last 15 to 20 years such that it almost seems irresponsible jumping without an AAD. The reasons why not to have one went away with the introduction of digital processing units, other than the cost. You simply can not plan for every scenario, something totally out of your control can render you unconscious or otherwise unable to deploy a canopy.



Exactly......couldn't agree more.

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flyboy6554

***It seems that there are a few fatalities every year caused by someone getting fixated and losing track of time/altitude. Trying to fix a spinning line twist malfunction is another one that people way too often get fixated on and end up low with limited options.

About a dozen years ago, I witnessed a skydiver who dislocated both shoulders falling on a building formation. He's walking the earth today because he had an AAD. I and a couple of other "old school guys" installed AADs in our containers shortly thereafter. Such a change of mindset over the last 15 to 20 years such that it almost seems irresponsible jumping without an AAD. The reasons why not to have one went away with the introduction of digital processing units, other than the cost. You simply can not plan for every scenario, something totally out of your control can render you unconscious or otherwise unable to deploy a canopy.



Exactly......couldn't agree more.



At the DZ I jumped at (Skydive Nagambie in Australia .. a good dropzone) AADs were compulsory. Might be time everyone followed that. A reserve is compulsory so should an AAD. I remember at ist jump course at bridgewater we were told an Australian champion was saved by AAD. Seems she could not find her reserve handle after cutaway. if that sort of thing can happen to such an experienced jumper it can happened to anyone.

obviously the swoopers need a special aad. Compulsory AAds and RSLs would save many lives every year.

However you good folk in the USA have a fear about the government telling you what you must do.. but thats a different story. I love the USA and its people by the way.. visit often. but you have a different mindset over there.
I tend to be a bit different. enjoyed my time in the sport or is it an industry these days ??

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AADs are required at my dropzone, but that is only because it is located in a fairly densely populated urban area and the city asked for that during negotiations over opening (or actually re-opening) the DZ. From that perspective it has more to do with protecting people/property on the ground than it does with mandating protection for skydivers. I do not think there would be much support for mandating AADs for everybody, even though almost everybody I know uses one.

Don
_____________________________________
Tolerance is the cost we must pay for our adventure in liberty. (Dworkin, 1996)
“Education is not filling a bucket, but lighting a fire.” (Yeats)

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gregpso

******It seems that there are a few fatalities every year caused by someone getting fixated and losing track of time/altitude. Trying to fix a spinning line twist malfunction is another one that people way too often get fixated on and end up low with limited options.

About a dozen years ago, I witnessed a skydiver who dislocated both shoulders falling on a building formation. He's walking the earth today because he had an AAD. I and a couple of other "old school guys" installed AADs in our containers shortly thereafter. Such a change of mindset over the last 15 to 20 years such that it almost seems irresponsible jumping without an AAD. The reasons why not to have one went away with the introduction of digital processing units, other than the cost. You simply can not plan for every scenario, something totally out of your control can render you unconscious or otherwise unable to deploy a canopy.



Exactly......couldn't agree more.



At the DZ I jumped at (Skydive Nagambie in Australia .. a good dropzone) AADs were compulsory. Might be time everyone followed that. A reserve is compulsory so should an AAD. I remember at ist jump course at bridgewater we were told an Australian champion was saved by AAD. Seems she could not find her reserve handle after cutaway. if that sort of thing can happen to such an experienced jumper it can happened to anyone.

obviously the swoopers need a special aad. Compulsory AAds and RSLs would save many lives every year.

However you good folk in the USA have a fear about the government telling you what you must do.. but thats a different story. I love the USA and its people by the way.. visit often. but you have a different mindset over there.

Grepso--these comments are not directed at you. I just didn't know how to start a new thingie.

Apologies to all for my colloquial use of English--but--well--I'm angry.

OK--so we have yet another tragic death from (it seems) low reserve deployment--and one in Pepperel a few days ago (cause of that one still TBD). Every time this happens (and it happens too often) the pros and cons of AADs get paraded out and the usual back and forth ensues about would it have.......or wouldn't it have.

I recently made a pilgrimage back to my old DZ in Canada. Was happy to find Tom still hale and hardy and still running the place. We had a discussion about AADs. His insight cut through the bullshit with brevity and elegance. "Is anyone arrogant enough to think that they will NEVER fuck up?" Twelve words said it all.

We all fuck up at one time or another. Whether it's while driving, surfing, scuba diving or just plain walking down the street. Fortunately, the consequences of fucking up while doing something trivial or non-life threatening are usually small. Fucking up in freefall--fucking up your packing--fucking up by mid-air--getting fucked up from a slam opening--is an extremely non-trivial event.

Have you fucked up while at terminal or close to it? Have you tried to kick out your spinning line twists and gone too low before cutting it away? If you're answering these questions in the affirmative you were either lucky or an AAD/RSL saved your ass.

My deepest and heartfelt condolences to our departed brother's family. I mean it. But goddam it--I am getting really really tired of reading these kind of incident reports. If you don't give a damn about your own ass--or if you're so colossally arrogant as to think that everybody else fucks up but never you--then think about your family, your friends, your brothers and sisters in the sport. AADs and RSLs aren't perfect--but you sure as hell aren't either.

Consider the words of my old friend and instructor Tom --ask yourself the hard question--then shitcan your arrogance.

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Quote

My deepest and heartfelt condolences to our departed brother's family. I mean it. But goddam it--I am getting really really tired of reading these kind of incident reports. If you don't give a damn about your own ass--or if you're so colossally arrogant as to think that everybody else fucks up but never you--then think about your family, your friends, your brothers and sisters in the sport. AADs and RSLs aren't perfect--but you sure as hell aren't either.



I agree personally, but there are *a lot* of people who don't jump who could easily say the same thing to their family or loved ones just because they chose to jump. It's an added risk that a lot of people don't agree with or understand.

I'm not ready to make such harsh judgement calls about what safety gear another jumper chooses to use. It's all relative.
Owned by Remi #?

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You know--I hear the message about choice. We choose to jump. We choose to wear a reserve--or do we? The FAA says we must. It also says we must have our reserves inspected and repacked every six months. Why? Well--IMO for good and sane reasons. We choose to use ram air reserves rather than rounds. Or do we? Show up at a new DZ with a round reserve and you are likely to be told--nope--not here. We choose to wear helmets. We use BOC pilot chutes rather than leg strap versions. Choice? Try buying a rig with a leg strap pilot chute. We choose to use three ring cutaway systems rather than Capewells. If you ask why we "choose" to use all these devices the answer is usually--"because they're safer than the alternatives". Oh? I don't remember seeing many serious injury or fatality reports involving fully deployed rounds. Today we see those frequently. Ram air safer than round? Inherently--probably. We "choose" to swoop because we can with a ram air--sometimes that's an incorrect choice.

To forestall the accusations that are already fomenting in the minds of the knee-jerk thinking skydivers out there--I do not advocate mandating return to rounds or Capewells. I am simply trying to make the point that we make "choices" because either they make good sense or that we really don't have a choice. When it comes to buying new gear--every rig comes with three rings and boc.

The point? Evolution sometimes obviates "choice". Ram air obviated rounds. Three rings obviated Capewells. BOC obviated leg strap. Throw out PCs obviated ripcords. Evolution will, eventually, obviate the inclusion of AADs.

I don't know one DZO who does not use AAD/RSL in all student rental gear. I don't know if you can rent gear (student or not) at all without an AAD in it. Why? For pretty damn good reasons. Students fuck up. Experienced skydivers fuck up too. To those that say AADs fuck up too-well--so do BOC pilot chutes--so do three rings--but we "choose" to use them.

I wish I could ask every single skydiver who has had his AAD save his or her butt (and why it did) whether or not he or she would keep the AAD or not. Care to speculate as to the answer?

To those who say that we should know and practice EP as an argument against AAD--yes--absolutely. The hard deck is the hard deck--reach it with a serious problem and cut away--deploy reserve, right? Then why in hell don't we do it every single time? Why in hell do we continue to read incident reports about low reserve deployments resulting in injury or death? Mostly because we fuck up--that's why. Why do we fuck up even after being trained and practice hard deck procedures? Because we're human.....because we're fallible....because when you're spinning under a twisted main your mind gets fucked up and stops thinking the way it did on the ground when you practiced EP. Spin fast enough and long enough and your mind stops thinking at all....pull 4 Gs for fifteen seconds under a spinning main and tell me about how clear your mind is.

There will come a day when skydivers will look askance at a rig with no AAD just as they would today at a rig with Capewells on it. There will come a day when, here in the USA as has happened in many other countries, no AAD--no jump--whether mandated by DZOs or by regulation.

You didn't stop jumping because your choice to use Capewells or ripcords or leg strap pilot chutes was essentially removed. Will y'all stop jumping because the AAD choice has been made for you?

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katzas

You know--I hear the message about choice. We choose to jump. We choose to wear a reserve--or do we? The FAA says we must. It also says we must have our reserves inspected and repacked every six months. Why? Well--IMO for good and sane reasons. We choose to use ram air reserves rather than rounds. Or do we? Show up at a new DZ with a round reserve and you are likely to be told--nope--not here. We choose to wear helmets. We use BOC pilot chutes rather than leg strap versions. Choice? Try buying a rig with a leg strap pilot chute. We choose to use three ring cutaway systems rather than Capewells. If you ask why we "choose" to use all these devices the answer is usually--"because they're safer than the alternatives". Oh? I don't remember seeing many serious injury or fatality reports involving fully deployed rounds. Today we see those frequently. Ram air safer than round? Inherently--probably. We "choose" to swoop because we can with a ram air--sometimes that's an incorrect choice.

To forestall the accusations that are already fomenting in the minds of the knee-jerk thinking skydivers out there--I do not advocate mandating return to rounds or Capewells. I am simply trying to make the point that we make "choices" because either they make good sense or that we really don't have a choice. When it comes to buying new gear--every rig comes with three rings and boc.

The point? Evolution sometimes obviates "choice". Ram air obviated rounds. Three rings obviated Capewells. BOC obviated leg strap. Throw out PCs obviated ripcords. Evolution will, eventually, obviate the inclusion of AADs.

I don't know one DZO who does not use AAD/RSL in all student rental gear. I don't know if you can rent gear (student or not) at all without an AAD in it. Why? For pretty damn good reasons. Students fuck up. Experienced skydivers fuck up too. To those that say AADs fuck up too-well--so do BOC pilot chutes--so do three rings--but we "choose" to use them.

I wish I could ask every single skydiver who has had his AAD save his or her butt (and why it did) whether or not he or she would keep the AAD or not. Care to speculate as to the answer?

To those who say that we should know and practice EP as an argument against AAD--yes--absolutely. The hard deck is the hard deck--reach it with a serious problem and cut away--deploy reserve, right? Then why in hell don't we do it every single time? Why in hell do we continue to read incident reports about low reserve deployments resulting in injury or death? Mostly because we fuck up--that's why. Why do we fuck up even after being trained and practice hard deck procedures? Because we're human.....because we're fallible....because when you're spinning under a twisted main your mind gets fucked up and stops thinking the way it did on the ground when you practiced EP. Spin fast enough and long enough and your mind stops thinking at all....pull 4 Gs for fifteen seconds under a spinning main and tell me about how clear your mind is.

There will come a day when skydivers will look askance at a rig with no AAD just as they would today at a rig with Capewells on it. There will come a day when, here in the USA as has happened in many other countries, no AAD--no jump--whether mandated by DZOs or by regulation.

You didn't stop jumping because your choice to use Capewells or ripcords or leg strap pilot chutes was essentially removed. Will y'all stop jumping because the AAD choice has been made for you?



If he was trying to fight a streamer or a mal for too long (which, without any other details than the basics we got sounds about right), no number of AAD or RSLs or Skyhooks may have saved him. Yes, they're great backup devices, but they don't replace doing your EPs on time.
Remster

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Remster


If he was trying to fight a streamer or a mal for too long (which, without any other details than the basics we got sounds about right), no number of AAD or RSLs or Skyhooks may have saved him. Yes, they're great backup devices, but they don't replace doing your EPs on time.



Per Twardo:
"Main was not deployed"
"The restraining order says you're only allowed to touch me in freefall"
=P

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katzas

You know--I hear the message about choice. We choose to jump. We choose to wear a reserve--or do we? The FAA says we must. It also says we must have our reserves inspected and repacked every six months. Why? Well--IMO for good and sane reasons. We choose to use ram air reserves rather than rounds. Or do we? Show up at a new DZ with a round reserve and you are likely to be told--nope--not here. We choose to wear helmets. We use BOC pilot chutes rather than leg strap versions. Choice? Try buying a rig with a leg strap pilot chute. We choose to use three ring cutaway systems rather than Capewells. If you ask why we "choose" to use all these devices the answer is usually--"because they're safer than the alternatives". Oh? I don't remember seeing many serious injury or fatality reports involving fully deployed rounds. Today we see those frequently. Ram air safer than round? Inherently--probably. We "choose" to swoop because we can with a ram air--sometimes that's an incorrect choice.

To forestall the accusations that are already fomenting in the minds of the knee-jerk thinking skydivers out there--I do not advocate mandating return to rounds or Capewells. I am simply trying to make the point that we make "choices" because either they make good sense or that we really don't have a choice. When it comes to buying new gear--every rig comes with three rings and boc.

The point? Evolution sometimes obviates "choice". Ram air obviated rounds. Three rings obviated Capewells. BOC obviated leg strap. Throw out PCs obviated ripcords. Evolution will, eventually, obviate the inclusion of AADs.

I don't know one DZO who does not use AAD/RSL in all student rental gear. I don't know if you can rent gear (student or not) at all without an AAD in it. Why? For pretty damn good reasons. Students fuck up. Experienced skydivers fuck up too. To those that say AADs fuck up too-well--so do BOC pilot chutes--so do three rings--but we "choose" to use them.

I wish I could ask every single skydiver who has had his AAD save his or her butt (and why it did) whether or not he or she would keep the AAD or not. Care to speculate as to the answer?

To those who say that we should know and practice EP as an argument against AAD--yes--absolutely. The hard deck is the hard deck--reach it with a serious problem and cut away--deploy reserve, right? Then why in hell don't we do it every single time? Why in hell do we continue to read incident reports about low reserve deployments resulting in injury or death? Mostly because we fuck up--that's why. Why do we fuck up even after being trained and practice hard deck procedures? Because we're human.....because we're fallible....because when you're spinning under a twisted main your mind gets fucked up and stops thinking the way it did on the ground when you practiced EP. Spin fast enough and long enough and your mind stops thinking at all....pull 4 Gs for fifteen seconds under a spinning main and tell me about how clear your mind is.

There will come a day when skydivers will look askance at a rig with no AAD just as they would today at a rig with Capewells on it. There will come a day when, here in the USA as has happened in many other countries, no AAD--no jump--whether mandated by DZOs or by regulation.

You didn't stop jumping because your choice to use Capewells or ripcords or leg strap pilot chutes was essentially removed. Will y'all stop jumping because the AAD choice has been made for you?



(bolded quote): Just to note, it is often said that an AAD save is a bounce that didn't happen, so the "why" question should be the first and most important one. Followed by "what have you done to fix your EP's?(assuming the jumper isn't a victim of a FF collision)

(underlined quote): I haven't seen anyone advocating that POV at all.

Rather I have seen comments that relying on AAD's as a replacement for EPs is folly, and proper execution of EP's should make the carrying (or not) of an AAD irrelevant. And thats how it should be.

Sometimes in the past, the use of an AAD resulted in the bowling speech...maybe that should happen a bit more often!.
My computer beat me at chess, It was no match for me at kickboxing....

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Current AAD's are not compatible with high performance canopy flight. Yes - I'm aware of the "speed" versions and their firing parameters, and stand by my statement.

So that's still a reason not to have one - at least not in dedicated swoop rigs.

I don't know if AAD's are considered to be compatible with CrW yet or not, but that could be another discipline where you don't necessarily want one.

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katzas

You know--I hear the message about choice. We choose to jump. We choose to wear a reserve--or do we? The FAA says we must. It also says we must have our reserves inspected and repacked every six months. Why? Well--IMO for good and sane reasons. We choose to use ram air reserves rather than rounds. Or do we? Show up at a new DZ with a round reserve and you are likely to be told--nope--not here. We choose to wear helmets. We use BOC pilot chutes rather than leg strap versions. Choice? Try buying a rig with a leg strap pilot chute. We choose to use three ring cutaway systems rather than Capewells. If you ask why we "choose" to use all these devices the answer is usually--"because they're safer than the alternatives". Oh? I don't remember seeing many serious injury or fatality reports involving fully deployed rounds. Today we see those frequently. Ram air safer than round? Inherently--probably. We "choose" to swoop because we can with a ram air--sometimes that's an incorrect choice.

To forestall the accusations that are already fomenting in the minds of the knee-jerk thinking skydivers out there--I do not advocate mandating return to rounds or Capewells. I am simply trying to make the point that we make "choices" because either they make good sense or that we really don't have a choice. When it comes to buying new gear--every rig comes with three rings and boc.

The point? Evolution sometimes obviates "choice". Ram air obviated rounds. Three rings obviated Capewells. BOC obviated leg strap. Throw out PCs obviated ripcords. Evolution will, eventually, obviate the inclusion of AADs.

I don't know one DZO who does not use AAD/RSL in all student rental gear. I don't know if you can rent gear (student or not) at all without an AAD in it. Why? For pretty damn good reasons. Students fuck up. Experienced skydivers fuck up too. To those that say AADs fuck up too-well--so do BOC pilot chutes--so do three rings--but we "choose" to use them.

I wish I could ask every single skydiver who has had his AAD save his or her butt (and why it did) whether or not he or she would keep the AAD or not. Care to speculate as to the answer?

To those who say that we should know and practice EP as an argument against AAD--yes--absolutely. The hard deck is the hard deck--reach it with a serious problem and cut away--deploy reserve, right? Then why in hell don't we do it every single time? Why in hell do we continue to read incident reports about low reserve deployments resulting in injury or death? Mostly because we fuck up--that's why. Why do we fuck up even after being trained and practice hard deck procedures? Because we're human.....because we're fallible....because when you're spinning under a twisted main your mind gets fucked up and stops thinking the way it did on the ground when you practiced EP. Spin fast enough and long enough and your mind stops thinking at all....pull 4 Gs for fifteen seconds under a spinning main and tell me about how clear your mind is.

There will come a day when skydivers will look askance at a rig with no AAD just as they would today at a rig with Capewells on it. There will come a day when, here in the USA as has happened in many other countries, no AAD--no jump--whether mandated by DZOs or by regulation.

You didn't stop jumping because your choice to use Capewells or ripcords or leg strap pilot chutes was essentially removed. Will y'all stop jumping because the AAD choice has been made for you?



It's not at all arrogance that one won't fuck up. It's obviously a judgement about the cost-benefit analysis of 'what are the odds that I'll need it". and many jumpers will look at the same odds, and decide differently whether the cost-benefit analysis makes them decide to buy one or not. Being a dzo may indeed skew the analysis in Tom's case, or maybe not.

For you're other point, it is quite possible that a lot of people over the years HAVE INDEED stopped jumping because the choice to use rounds, or capewells, or leg strap pcs was removed. How would you know? And many people may have thought about coming back and using their old gear, seen the price of new gear and decided not to.

Point being, it is a dzo's right to require an aad on his dz. It is a jumper's right to decide not to jump there....
If some old guy can do it then obviously it can't be very extreme. Otherwise he'd already be dead.
Bruce McConkey 'I thought we were gonna die, and I couldn't think of anyone

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I have known multiple people in recent years who have gotten leg strap throw outs because of shoulder injuries or in one case a male who was too "buff" to be able to reach a BOC. Obviously they were belly fliers but leg strap was fine..

And most CRWdogs and advanced swoopers don't want AADs on their rigs.

The biggest thing I see is money. I see tons of rookies really struggling to come up with the money even for a really old-not fancy-rig. Adding an AAD to it is money they just don't have..

I know very few freefallers (as opposed to CRW folks and dedicated swoopers) who don't have them for a philosophical reason. Its generally a monetary reason...

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faulknerwn

I have known multiple people in recent years who have gotten leg strap throw outs because of shoulder injuries or in one case a male who was too "buff" to be able to reach a BOC. Obviously they were belly fliers but leg strap was fine..

And most CRWdogs and advanced swoopers don't want AADs on their rigs.

The biggest thing I see is money. I see tons of rookies really struggling to come up with the money even for a really old-not fancy-rig. Adding an AAD to it is money they just don't have..

I know very few freefallers (as opposed to CRW folks and dedicated swoopers) who don't have them for a philosophical reason. Its generally a monetary reason...



Rookie skydivers are the some of the people that need one the most [:/] Every AAD fire I have seen (except one when a AFFI was chasing down a student and they both had one) was students or new jumpers. There is a small minority of skydivers that would be safer without one but most people should have one. The FAA does not mandate us as much as other countries version of it does to them because with the USPA we are self regulating but that can change real fast. Maybe they should be required but you can get a S&TA waiver if you are one of the few people that has a reason not to jump with one.

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faulknerwn

I have known multiple people in recent years who have gotten leg strap throw outs because of shoulder injuries or in one case a male who was too "buff" to be able to reach a BOC. Obviously they were belly fliers but leg strap was fine..

And most CRWdogs and advanced swoopers don't want AADs on their rigs.

The biggest thing I see is money. I see tons of rookies really struggling to come up with the money even for a really old-not fancy-rig. Adding an AAD to it is money they just don't have..

I know very few freefallers (as opposed to CRW folks and dedicated swoopers) who don't have them for a philosophical reason. Its generally a monetary reason...



There is no doubt that a new AAD increases the cost of a rig by about $1300 or so. That being said--it is probably the one component of a rig that holds it's value the best. Buy one today for the above price and sell it either with your rig or seperately in five years and (assuming a Vigil) lose about $500.00 on it. A hundred bucks a year (4 jumps a year by my reckoning) to have that kind of backup protection is a pretty trivial number.

As to leg strap pcs--yes I guess you can have rigs modified to include one--but they are not even offered as an option by most manufacturers on new gear. It's a custom job for a rigger and has to cost $$$.

CRW guys may not do CRW on every jump. I guess a case could be made that an AAD in a CRW situation might not be a good idea--but--they come with an ON-OFF button. Turn it on if you're not doing CRW. Swoopers are another issue--but--they do their high speed canopy stuff at low altitude under a fully deployed canopy which tends to make the AAD a non-starter for them at that altitude. However, given the nature of the high performance canopies that the swoopers use and their tendency to have more serious malfunctions at opening--an AAD would be a useful backup for them as well.

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faulknerwn


The biggest thing I see is money. I see tons of rookies really struggling to come up with the money even for a really old-not fancy-rig. Adding an AAD to it is money they just don't have..



Yup, and the "It's only $100/yr!" argument is bullshit because that's not how you pay for them.

I've been jumping for 10 years and only last year did I buy an AAD with intent to continue using it (I owned 2 Cyprii with a matter of months left on them in the past to get by on DZs that required them), and I bought a used Vigil 1. Actually it might be a Vigil 2. I have no idea.

In any case, I always liked the idea of having one, but the price was a little hard to swallow.
cavete terrae.

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Just to note, it is often said that an AAD save is a bounce that didn't happen, so the "why" question should be the first and most important one. Followed by "what have you done to fix your EP's?(assuming the jumper isn't a victim of a FF collision)

I agree with your comment above as to the "why". However, the only way anyone is going to be able to ask that question and have it answered is if the AAD saved the person on the other end of that question.

Freefall collisions aren't the only reason a skydiver becomes unable to perform EPs. Hard openings cause all sorts of physical (and equipment) problems. Sometimes making the decision to work on the problem until the hard deck can incapacitate due to g forces building up impairing both mental and physical ability.

I have never advocated relying on an AAD to do what you should be doing. Just as an RSL will most likely get your reserve out before you can clear your reserve ripcord--we teach students to pull it anyway. However--if you can't do an EP--or you fuck up and lose awareness--or whatever the hell happened--it just might save your ass so that why question can be asked and answered.

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Oh? Seen the vid of a freefall photographer (pro) who got saved by his buddies? He was out like a light and unresponsive. Don't know if he had an AAD--his friends performed that function before an AAD would have fired. Novice? Don't think so.

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Well, in fact, it is how you can pay for them. Use a credit card--buy one--pay it off in a year--whatever. Yes, you pay interest--but if it saved your ass that's a small price to pay.

Skydiving is not a cheap sport. The equipment is expensive, jumps are expensive.......that's a given. New skydivers try to buy used stuff--and many are successful. Some can''t because of size, canopy type, etc. It costs what it costs. An AAD adds about 20% (give or take) to the cost of a complete new rig.

I just bought all new stuff. I wanted a Vigil. However, Vigil, in their wisdom, decided to upgrade (or whatever they call it) their AAD at exactly the wrong time. Murphy exerted his influence and when I needed one there wasn't one single dealer in the world who could sell me one. So--I jumped my new gear without one--only a few times.

I am satisfied with my new gear--but I stopped jumping that rig because there is no AAD in it. As soon as Vigil gets their shit together I'll order one and have it installed--then I'll jump the hell outta my new stuff. Until then--my pretty new rig sits in it's bag. Yes I could have purchased a Cypres.....but I didn't for a few good reasons. I made that choice. You made the choice to include an AAD in your rig too. I think we both made the right choices.

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but if it saved your ass that's a small price to pay.

the key phrase in your statement. "IF" it saved your ass. It's a simple cost-benefit analysis. Not 'I will never need...' but rather 'What are the chances, doing the kind of jumping I do that I will need?" Different people will come up with different answers.

I'm not anti-aad. If you want one, get one. If the dzo wants you to have one to jump at his dz, he can do that. But they shouldn't be mandated across the board. If the dzo in the next town doesn't require them there, I'll jump there.

That said, I'm in agreement that until someone is licenced, they should have one. Once they have a licence they're supposed to be able to decide for themselves how they want to proceed.
If some old guy can do it then obviously it can't be very extreme. Otherwise he'd already be dead.
Bruce McConkey 'I thought we were gonna die, and I couldn't think of anyone

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