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AdamLanes

Skydiving and Alcohol

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I think there is also a big part of a "cultural" problem. From what I've noticed in the Anglo-Saxon world in general, any amount of drinking and working is frowned upon, regardless of the job: even more so if the job/activity is safety critical like skydiving. I've had many instance of people telling me that having "a beer" during a business lunch was not exactly appropriate, even if it wasn't a big deal either.

On the contrary, in Italy, Spain, etc. ONE glass of wine or ONE beer over lunch is generally given for granted.
Heck, we used to serve wine at the cafeteria of the military base I used to go to.

That might or might not be because, from what I've learned after hanging with you guys (Brits, Americans, Australians), there is no such a thing as ONE beer. which is more like an euphemism for 4 or 5.

So in that respect, even though I think ONE beer over the course of a lunch would not affect the judgement and motor skills of anyone, I am also ok with waiting a few hours before having "one beers" (sic.).



That has to do with that we've culturally become used to low quality alcohol so the point of drinking it is not because of how it tastes. That's changing a bit in the beer world.
"I encourage all awesome dangerous behavior." - Jeffro Fincher

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I think zero tolerance is a great practice. I don't drink and drive either especially with my son in the truck. Why take the chance? When I had my jeep I used to wheel with a club but more than half the guys were shitfaced after a day of wheeling. We quit going because I didn't want to accociate with half a dozen drunk drivers.

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.. .......

I'm stuck trying to find the "fancy" word though. :P
.........................

Hypoxia a medical term meaning low (hypo) on oxygen (oxia.)
There are a variety of ways to get low on oxygen: smoke inhalation, lung disease, flying above sea level or ingesting drugs like alcohol.
Alcohol reduces the amount of oxygen that you blood can carry out to your organs.
Combine this with smaller amounts of atmospheric oxygen above 5,000 feet above sea level and you get a double dose of low oxygen levels: degrading vision, reaction time, logic, decision-making, etc. the worst thing is that both alcohol and hypoxia induce euphoria in most people, so they stubbornly rely any impairment even when their buddies see them staggering, slurring their words, etc.

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Alcohol does not reduce the bloods ability to carry oxygen. It blocks the organs(brain) ability to absorb the available oxygen. If I remember correctly from my army instructor pilot days this is called histoxic hypoxia.
Replying to: Re: Stall On Jump Run Emergency Procedure? by billvon

If the plane is unrecoverable then exiting is a very very good idea.

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I hadn't heard of histotoxic hypoxia so I did some looking and found this. I hate that coffee is on the list

http://dhss.alaska.gov/dph/Emergency/Documents/ems/assets/AirMedCourse/EMS-F_Chapter4.pdf

- Smoking (due to high baseline levels of carboxyhemoglobin)— 3 quick cigarettes or 1–1.5 pk/day = 2,000 foot physiological altitude.
- Alcohol consumption (due to histotoxic hypoxia)—one ounce of alcohol = 2,000 foot physiological altitude.
- Coffee (secondary to the stimulant effects of caffeine)—5 cups = 2,500 foot physiological altitude.
"Where troubles melt like lemon drops, away above the chimney tops, that's where you'll find me" Dorothy

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The four types of hypoxia ...from our friends at the FAA

Hypoxic Hypoxia

This is the most common form of hypoxia encountered in aviation and occurs at the lung level. This type of hypoxia is commonly called altitude hypoxia. Pilots may experience hypoxic hypoxia when flying at altitude in an unpressurized aircraft. With increasing altitude, the molecules of oxygen in ambient air get farther apart and exert less pressure per square inch. The percentage of oxygen does not change as we ascend; however, the partial pressure of oxygen in ambient air decreases as we go to altitude. In other words, with increasing altitude, the partial pressure of oxygen gets lower and the lungs cannot effectively transfer oxygen from the ambient air to the blood to be carried to all tissues in the body.

Hypemic Hypoxia

This type of hypoxia is caused by the reduced ability of the blood to carry oxygen. To the pilot, this means that, even though there is an adequate supply of oxygen to breathe, the blood's capacity to carry the oxygen to the cells has been impaired. There are a variety of reasons for this to happen. Anemia, hemorrhage, hemoglobin abnormalities, sulfa drugs, nitrites, and carbon monoxide interfere with the ability of the blood to carry oxygen, reducing the amount of oxygen the blood can carry to the cells. The most common cause for hypemic hypoxia in aviation is when carbon monoxide is inhaled because of aircraft heater malfunctions, engine manifold leaks, or cockpit contamination with exhaust from other aircraft. Hemoglobin bonds with carbon monoxide 200 times more readily than it bonds with oxygen.

Stagnant Hypoxia

This type of hypoxia occurs at the circulatory level. If the blood flow is compromised for any reason, then sufficient oxygen cannot get to the body tissues. To the pilot, this means, that even though there is an adequate supply of oxygen to breathe, it is not getting to the cells of the body tissues to support their metabolism. Decreased blood flow can result from the heart failing to pump effectively, arterial constriction pooling of the blood such as occurs during neurologic shock or from enlarged veins in the lower extremities. Stagnant hypoxia also occurs when the body is exposed to cold temperatures because the blood flow is decreased to the extremities. This may happen following a rapid decompression during flight or while operating an aircraft in cold weather conditions without cabin heating.

Histoxic Hypoxia

This type of hypoxia happens at the cell level. This means that the cell expecting and needing the oxygen is impaired and cannot use the oxygen to support metabolism. To the pilot, this means that even though there is an adequate supply of oxygen to breathe and that oxygen is being circulated by the blood, the cells are unable to accept or use the oxygen. Alcohol, narcotics, and cyanide are three primary factors that can cause histoxic hypoxia. Cyanide is one of the byproducts during the combustion of plastics.
Replying to: Re: Stall On Jump Run Emergency Procedure? by billvon

If the plane is unrecoverable then exiting is a very very good idea.

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I was warned early on by a skydiver who was to become a great friend about the worst hazard of drinking and jumping. "Bob, I was at this boogie but we were weathered out so we spent the morning drinking. Then the sun came out so we said Let's do one! Bob, (he's got tears in his eyes now) Bob, never do it. The moment I exited the adrenaline made me cold sober. I wasted all that BEER!!!!"

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We'd have these weekend long parties. One jumper ran a bar and he'd bring three kegs. We had two refrigerators, one with a tap and one that didn't but would hold the two spares and keep them cold. Well, not really spares, none of them made it until Sunday. The thing is you'd wake up with a brutal hangover and the ride to altitude would be torture but the first jump would clear it all out and you'd be fine. Except of course for our pilot. By the end of he day he'd be red faced with this little vein that pulsed in his forehead and meaner than a snake. If you had something you had to talk to him about you might want to wait until the beer light came on and he'd downed a few first.

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"That seems like a good idea, but might be tough to execute. It comes down to this, HAVE SOME COMMON SINCE! But we all know that cant happen."

Unfortunately, after a bounce the families and lawyers come out of the woodwork and common sense goes out the window. If I were a dzo that would be my biggest worry, that a lawyer would use alcohol in the blood, even though it had nothing to do with the accident, to get the jury worked up.

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Hajo

FAR, Part 105, Sec. 105.7

is or appears to be under the influence of--



So in leaglease, that means there is any detectable amount of alcohol in the person's system. 0.08 is just a level that was decided on for the operation of motor vehicles, but any alcohol will cause some form of impairment. Even if the impairment is irrelevant and undetectable.

You can be sure that will be argued if alcohol is found in a jumper's system, and then your fate is in the hands of the judicial system.

As for alcohol's neurological effect "impairment" if you will, in the short term, it is mostly due to interfering with neural synapses. With chronic use, or if you are really intoxicated, it will affect cellular metabolism in a significant way.

The arguments over the mechanism in the preceding posts are grossly oversimplified down to the point of being rather irrelevant and inaccurate.

Really simple explanation
http://www.ehow.com/info_8017604_effects-alcohol-oxygen-absorption.html

Less simple explanation
http://themedicalbiochemistrypage.org/ethanol-metabolism.php

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