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Your hole closed

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if you were a TI and headed to altitude and the hole you were aiming for closed up... would you get out of the plane if you had a wrist mounted GPS? You would know exactly where you were but the industrial haze was stronger than when you took off. Would that tool make any difference in our decision to jump or not?

Just wondering.

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No.

In the United States the airspace below that hole belongs to the public, and is freely accessible to pilots and aircraft. The wrist mount altimeter does not provide any assurance the airspace is clear, nor does it protect against a collision with other parachutes. And of course jumping through clouds is illegal and thus the pilot, DZO, and anybody else involved could be prosecuted. Plus, as a tandem instructor you have made a commitment to the student to follow the rules and keep the jump as safe as possible.

In the United States jumping through clouds is just plain wrong, and we shouldn't be looking for little tiny cracks in that right/wrong argument to slip ourselves through.
Tom Buchanan
Instructor Emeritus
Comm Pilot MSEL,G
Author: JUMP! Skydiving Made Fun and Easy

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FAR Sec. 105.17 Flight visibility and clearance from cloud requirements

No person may conduct a parachute operation, and no pilot in command of an aircraft may allow a parachute operation to be conducted from that aircraft--

(a) Into or through a cloud, or

(b) When the flight visibility or the distance from any cloud is less than that prescribed in the following table:

To read more, http://www.uspa.org/SIM/Read/Section9/Part105/tabid/254/Default.aspx#10517
Birdshit & Fools Productions

"Son, only two things fall from the sky."

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Absolutely not! I have way too much respect for the pilots I work with .... Even with GPS you would be limited to very few instruments and no communication for IFR flight.



....................................................................

OTOH I have way too little respect for transient pilots.
GPS is part of the problem.
Modern airspace is so complex that it is almost impossible for transient pilots to know where DZs are.

To further complicate the issue, GPS manufacturers are slow in adding "parachute" symbols to GPS data bases.
Hint: these days, most pilots fly cross-country with an eye glued to their GPS moving map display, while ignoring most other sources of information.

The second closest I ever came to dying - in Pitt Meadows - was when a transient Mooney blundered into the control zone with out saying anything on the radio!

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A long time ago, in another country, I did a few tandems through clouds.

First, we insisted on clear visibility between opening altitude and the target.

Secondly, we had a pilot who had spotted through "haze" hundreds of times and we trusted him.

Thirdly, we only jumped through "haze" over flat land, never in mountain valleys.

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Personally, I'd have issues with the pilot being dumb enough to go up through the hole in the first place.

They call them "sucker holes" for a reason.

Going up through a cloud layer that you may not be able to get back down through?:S

Just my $0.02
"There are NO situations which do not call for a French Maid outfit." Lucky McSwervy

"~ya don't GET old by being weak & stupid!" - Airtwardo

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if you were a TI and headed to altitude and the hole you were aiming for closed up... would you get out of the plane if you had a wrist mounted GPS? You would know exactly where you were but the industrial haze was stronger than when you took off. Would that tool make any difference in our decision to jump or not?

Just wondering.



Knowing where you're jumping, I'd say no, because there is frequently a flyover or close pass to the airspace at that airport by light and military aircraft.

Don't trust what you can't see, Tom. B|

Nova
"Even in a world where perfection is unattainable, there's still a difference between excellence and mediocrity." Gary73

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A long time ago, in another country, I did a few tandems through clouds.

First, we insisted on clear visibility between opening altitude and the target.

Secondly, we had a pilot who had spotted through "haze" hundreds of times and we trusted him.

Thirdly, we only jumped through "haze" over flat land, never in mountain valleys.


I did something similar, but only once or twice. The last and most memorable time that we all opted to go out with our tandems (3 or 4, all with cameras) the clouds had shifted and what was visibility between target and opening altitude before now became visibility between opening altitude and the ground.

I freefell through one cloud and opened on top of another, decided to fly through a valley towards the only land visible rather than straight for the dropzone, into a cloud where others had opened before me, but after losing altitude over that hole I finally had to enter the cloud again to get over the LZ. I knew where I was all the time, but I only had visual contact with the other tandems in the air for the last 1500' or so.
You can imagine I have no desire to repeat the experience...

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Thanks.

It was prompted by some interesting conversation around the bonfire a couple weeks ago and I thought some other opinions would be interesting to hear. As technology continues to evolve and tools become more user friendly for skydivers I am curious how far we will go using those tools to bend the rules a bit.

I appreciate the input.

Tom

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