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Deimian

Student mistakes

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pchapman

There's the chopping because ... the colour wasn't the same as in the video.

I almost did this. I was so spooked by a big flo yellow canopy when they had said all day that they were red and blue. Combine this with the massive sensory overload of a first jump SL student and you can imagine why I was so confused. Reflecting on this, it's easy to see why so many students fuck up seemingly simple tasks.

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From a static-line dz (no aff) circa 1990's:

--Once in a while a student would leave their brakes stowed and pound in landing backwards

--A kid with about 25 jumps cutaway his main and used his reserve on the used rig he just purchased because "it's mine and I want to try everything out"

--A female student with a low wingloading flew her canopy in a straight line 2 miles away from the dz and landed in some tall trees, requiring the fire department to extricate her. I was on radio and told her "turn left" many times, then "turn left or right" and finally "make any maneuver so I know you can hear me." Nothing...I assumed her radio was malfunctioning. Later I asked why she did not respond to my radio commands, and she said, "I didn't know if you meant your left or my left."

--A couple of students chopped their main canopy because there was a "hole in the slider." Some of the dz's older F111 canopies had round holes cut out of the sliders to speed up the openings.

--A dz pilot and helicopter flight instructor somehow had a 2-canopies-out situation. He managed to get both toggles of the main in one hand and both reserve toggles in the other hand. To everyone's surprise, he flared both canopies and made a stand-up landing.

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When I teach FJC I make sure to let my students know that their parachute will most likely be a different colour than the one on the posters/video/pictures, and that the colour of it doesn't much matter. It's everything else about it that does (square, inflated, controllable).

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Still a newb but something I haven't seen mentioned yet happened at my DZ a few weeks ago. Had a AFF1 jumper cut away her main because the slider was flapping. She wasn't sure it was supposed to do that.

I think it's hard sometimes to remember what it's like to be BRAND NEW to this sport. There is so much to take in and you're constantly looking around and asking questions. For many it is one of the only activities where it is fun but at the same time serious. It's easy to take something simple for granted when it is so ingrained in our mind but for the AFF1 jumper there is nothing simple or ingrained yet.

When people ask me about skydiving (because it's SOOOOOO dangerous and scary) I typically use a GUN analogy. Can be a lot of fun, but you better follow the rules to the letter or you can easily kill yourself or someone else. Both disciplines rely on repetition and redundancy to assure safety. New people to either discipline make mistakes and when I teach firearms to anyone I always try and remember what it's like to feel apprehension due to lack of knowledge.
Trail mix? Oh, you mean M&M's with obstacles.

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Yes, as a new skydiver I'm happy I've done a few tandems and have excellent instructors that drilled things into my head.

I had several line twists on my AFF 1 and was scared for a moment, but then remembered what Tom told me and checked altitude, looked at my handles (I was at over 4K) and kicked out of them no problem.

In my short time in the sport I've seen a student AAD fire and a separate no flare (well she was trying I think but just froze up even though the instructor was saying "flare, flare, flare!") that ended okay.

I remember the first maybe 5 or 6 jumps of AFF and the complete sensory overload, excitement, scariness, etc. that I felt. Awesome, but I can definitely see how people might freeze up or freak out.

The scariest pre-license jump for me was when I had to jump my pack job. I also needed a hop-n-pop and would not do both at the same time :)
Chance favors the prepared mind.

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primetime



--A dz pilot and helicopter flight instructor somehow had a 2-canopies-out situation. He managed to get both toggles of the main in one hand and both reserve toggles in the other hand. To everyone's surprise, he flared both canopies and made a stand-up landing.


Not that it's recommended, but you gotta give it to him.
That's quite badass!
I'm standing on the edge
With a vision in my head
My body screams release me
My dreams they must be fed... You're in flight.

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Di0

***

--A dz pilot and helicopter flight instructor somehow had a 2-canopies-out situation. He managed to get both toggles of the main in one hand and both reserve toggles in the other hand. To everyone's surprise, he flared both canopies and made a stand-up landing.


Not that it's recommended, but you gotta give it to him.
That's quite badass!

I am not sure if badass is the word, but definitely remarkable :-P.

I have two small stories/mistakes about myself.

Jump #4 or #5. I did my thing, everything was more or less ok and was about to land. As in the previous jumps I was hearing my instructor through the radio. "Don't flare yet.......... hands up...........not yet..........flare!". By the time I've heard flare my ass was already on the ground. My instructor and me were pretty far away, and the terrain was not flat, so I guess he didn't saw where I was exactly. My tailbone and "hump" bones were hurting for a week. Lesson learnt: trust your eyeballs more than the radio!

Around jump #25. Hop'n'pop. I did another 2 or 3 hop'n'pops that day. I got too confident. So I jumped, left hand on my front, right hand close to the hackey and pulled, almost immediately. I wasn't stable, went on my back, the bridle came between my arm and my body, and as I kept falling backwards the bridle somehow sneaked between my legs. Grabbed with my right hand, pull it out and the canopy opened nicely. Lesson learnt: don't get confident and/or cocky!

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Jump #2, I weighed about 45kg, age 16.
Canopy was connected incorrectly, flying backwards.

I figured it was OK, it was flying, I had control, I could flare and turn.

Not so easy looking behind you, and landed in a cemetary across the road without incident, standup.

Should have just chopped it. (I did get some beers for saving the reserve pack job, and landing standup...[:/])
You have the right to your opinion, and I have the right to tell you how Fu***** stupid it is.
Davelepka - "This isn't an x-box, or a Chevy truck forum"
Whatever you do, don't listen to ChrisD.

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Jump #5, I was about 800 ft turning onto base - "way too high," I think and decide to kick out the base leg a bit. Turn in on final a bit high still but I'm a good hundred yds plus behind the treeline (small trees) and a fence. I start slowing down, point of impact keeps creeping back towards the trees. I have a good 20 seconds or so to decide to heck with this, make a braked turn and land in the wide open field before the fence. Nope. I think, "no low turns, no low turns, no low turns" from ~400 ft up all the way into one of the trees. Busted my ankle up and took me a year to get back to jumping.

On the plus side, I did pick up motorcycling that Summer because I didn't have to put much pressure on my heels.

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This one way back, before people were so anal about rules.

H&P from the TOP. Yeah, cross country. Problem was, it was a sunset load, and turned into a night jump, following a highway to get back to the LZ.:)

Boy a 290 from 11k takes a looong time to come down. (The landings were NOT standup)
You have the right to your opinion, and I have the right to tell you how Fu***** stupid it is.
Davelepka - "This isn't an x-box, or a Chevy truck forum"
Whatever you do, don't listen to ChrisD.

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Just remembered a classic. Female student, was going ok, on her 8th jump. On this occasion due to our regular student landing area unable to be used, she was told to land in the local airport as we had an agreement there: we were issued security day passes as required. The procedure was the plane landed: stopped near her, she jumped in and back to the hangar. Now the instructor didn't land in there with her, he landed in the main DZ area which was basically over the fence: don't know why, she had been landing fine etc I guess, and she did the same on this occasion too. The plane ended up in a holding pattern so she was left waiting and waiting: and then contrary to instructions: walked across the runway to the hangar: the tower raised holy hell. Her justification was a bit amusing: `I walked to the end of the runway and walked across the pedestrian crossing' Pilots, know what markers she meant? heheh

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ryoder

Guy had ~30 jumps. Winds came up pretty strong about the time we jumped, and I was getting only moderate penetration with a 1.3 WL. As I was looking at the peas, the guy was below me on a student canopy, backing up. Suddenly, he chopped, reserve opened <1000' AGL, he unstowed brakes, and landed.

Afterward he swore to us that was what he was taught to do when strong winds are making you back up.:S

Might he have been taught to cutaway if the canopy was dragging him across the ground?

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I had a 1O jump student going out before me on a load, he asked me if there was anything I wanted him to do: "just make sure you track perpendicular to jump run" I told him. After hearing this he gave me a very quizzical look, I said you do know what perpendicular means? To which he responded: "I know what perpendicular means, but what does track mean?"


Dohhhh.

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jclalor

I had a 1O jump student going out before me on a load, he asked me if there was anything I wanted him to do: "just make sure you track perpendicular to jump run" I told him. After hearing this he gave me a very quizzical look, I said you do know what perpendicular means? To which he responded: "I know what perpendicular means, but what does track mean?"


Dohhhh.



Not sure I was tracking (or even talking about tracking) at 10 jumps, so I don't really see that one as a mistake

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JohnnyMarko

***I had a 1O jump student going out before me on a load, he asked me if there was anything I wanted him to do: "just make sure you track perpendicular to jump run" I told him. After hearing this he gave me a very quizzical look, I said you do know what perpendicular means? To which he responded: "I know what perpendicular means, but what does track mean?"


Dohhhh.




Not sure I was tracking (or even talking about tracking) at 10 jumps, so I don't really see that one as a mistake

I thought they taught everyone in AFF what tracking was, they made sure I could (half ass) track on my last 12 AFF jumps.

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jclalor

******I had a 1O jump student going out before me on a load, he asked me if there was anything I wanted him to do: "just make sure you track perpendicular to jump run" I told him. After hearing this he gave me a very quizzical look, I said you do know what perpendicular means? To which he responded: "I know what perpendicular means, but what does track mean?"


Dohhhh.




Not sure I was tracking (or even talking about tracking) at 10 jumps, so I don't really see that one as a mistake

I thought they taught everyone in AFF what tracking was, they made sure I could (half ass) track on my last 12 AFF jumps.

Dont forget about that crazy method called IAD. After reading more into your post and gathering clues though, if someone with 10 jumps is doing a solo they most likely went through AFF.

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Dont forget about that crazy method called IAD. After reading more into your post and gathering clues though, if someone with 10 jumps is doing a solo they most likely went through AFF.




Really? :o

I went 'solo' from jump number one...jump number six I got off the doperope and pulled my own ripcord! ;)



"Kids today!" :S:ph34r:










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

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Dont forget about that crazy method called IAD. After reading more into your post and gathering clues though, if someone with 10 jumps is doing a solo they most likely went through AFF.



A student on S/L or IAD progression, assuming he made all his dummy pulls ok, would probably make his first freefall - a hop & pop - at around jump #6. At jump #10, he's probably still concentrating on just falling flat & stable, so he might not have been taught about tracking yet. OTOH, if he was an AFF grad, then yeah, it's hard to fathom he'd be cleared to self-supervise w/o having been taught and demonstrated basic tracking form.

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JeffCa

We know there are people who just freeze up on their first jump. You know the ones who do absolutely nothing after the canopy opens? No unstowing the brakes, no inputs, just riding it to landing. It happened at the DZ where I got my first training, but years later. I saw it in the news and the reporters were all over the DZO about why their training was inadequate and the girl ended up in the trees. He shot back that she didn't do anything at all. I felt bad for him, it wasn't his fault. Knowing the LZ and how absolutely enormous it is, the only way you could get to the trees is to have frozen.

Has anybody been able to pick out, in advance, which students will freeze up? (Stupid question perhaps, because then they probably wouldn't be allowed to jump.)

And let me be the first to mention Scott Lutz.



To answer your question about picking out which students should not jump--yes--and it was a freaky thing. I used to jump at CPI and Gananoque (Ontario) years ago. I sat in on first jump courses with the idea of maybe being an instructor one day. In those days training was via static line. At CPI there was a girl from NYC (a princess) who absolutely refused to shout out the count on the ground--and presumably wouldn't do it in the air (something about screaming like an ape that offended her sensibilities). Her attitude and body language told me that she was an accident just waiting to happen. I was reluctant to mention it to the instructors--but I did. They refunded her money and sent her home trailing a line of obscenities at everyone who would listen. We found out much later that she did jump at another DZ--and--yup--she had a malfunction--did not deploy her reserve and got broken a lot. Second time was in Gan. Another girl--university student. For some reason I got the vibe that she should not be doing this. She didn't take it seriously enough--IMO. I said so. But--she was progressing well and continued until she got off the static line. On her 30th or so--no pull on either main or reserve. AAD's at that time were considered chicken shit. She died. Spooky, huh? So--sometimes you gotta go with your gut and just say no.

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This one could have ended up pretty bad. A couple years ago a girl was doing an AFF jump. Upon opening, here slink separated from her riser. The only think keeping them together was her stowed brake line. She had no idea anything was wrong, and landed it somehow uneventful. Her explanation when she got down was that the "black flappy thing"(her riser), didnt seem right but she just landed it anyway!

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devin2477

This one could have ended up pretty bad. A couple years ago a girl was doing an AFF jump. Upon opening, here slink separated from her riser. The only think keeping them together was her stowed brake line. She had no idea anything was wrong, and landed it somehow uneventful. Her explanation when she got down was that the "black flappy thing"(her riser), didnt seem right but she just landed it anyway!



Oh boy.
I honestly don't even completely understand how that's physically possible. :o
I'm standing on the edge
With a vision in my head
My body screams release me
My dreams they must be fed... You're in flight.

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Di0


Oh boy.
I honestly don't even completely understand how that's physically possible. :o



I guess it was one of the back risers. The canopy kept inflated that way, with the front side correctly set up, and the backside pressurized enough to keep the canopy shape (and hold "in place" by the brakes).

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