0
shah269

AAD or no AAD...that is the question

Recommended Posts

To AAD or not to AAD:
Automatic Activation Devices are designed to activate your parachute when you can’t or don’t.

Most of the common AAD’s used today go on the reserve. They really should be on the main but we don’t want to give up our hand deploy PC’s. It seems foolish to me to become conscious under a malfunctioned reserve and have a perfectly good main packed up that you can’t get to.

These common AAD’s used on reserves mostly have loop cutters which may trap the loop preventing normal deployment. While this potential violates the doctrine of “Must not interfere with the normal function of the parachute” AAD’s are beneficial to saving your life and should be given serious consideration. I believe in AAD’s, I believe they save lives. However, we should be asking the question “Will the rig in which I put the AAD deploy the reserve within the required 300 feet or at least from the 750 foot firing altitude”? All TSO’ed reserves are required to be able to do this. However, recently some have failed to accomplish this basic requirement of law.

Therefore, you should spend more time choosing the container you are going to put the AAD into, than choosing the AAD itself. All an AAD will do in a defective rig is “Fink” on it. The AAD data will prove the activation occurred at 750 feet and you will see the deployment time, maybe not completely.

Most of this problem is a compatibility problem and caused by overstuffed containers. Your rigger should be “Short lining you” if you try to put too big a canopy into a container causing excessive extraction effort. You should ask your dealer what the maximum allowable extraction force is and what the drag capability of the pilot chute is. If they can’t give you a definitive answer move on. Drag Capability may be given in Drag Coefficient or “Effective Size” or what it will drag at a given speed and altitude.

Yes! You should have an AAD but you should only put it into a system which has consistently performed and never failed. The info is out there!

If you want to test it your self: Tape up the loose ends of the harness and throw the rig out of an airplane, with a fully packed main & reserve, from high enough to activate the AAD. You don’t need a dummy. If the rig works then you have a winner. If it doesn’t then you have a very dirty mess to send back to the manufacturer for a refund. It would be worth the price of a cutter to know.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

If you want to test it your self: Tape up the loose ends of the harness and throw the rig out of an airplane, with a fully packed main & reserve, from high enough to activate the AAD. You don’t need a dummy. If the rig works then you have a winner. If it doesn’t then you have a very dirty mess to send back to the manufacturer for a refund. It would be worth the price of a cutter to know.



Interesting. Just the weight of the rig alone itself, no "dummy" required - and this should be expected to provide full/clean AAD activated reserve deployment? Seriously?

Quote

It would be worth the price of a cutter to know.



I might just be tempted enough on this to agree / actually try it. So long as I can find a DZ / Pilot also willing to cohort.
coitus non circum - Moab Stone

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
>Most of the common AAD’s used today go on the reserve. They really should be on the
>main but we don’t want to give up our hand deploy PC’s.

And many of us would rather land unconscious under a 143 square foot 7 cell than a 99 square foot highly elliptical 9 cell.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

his chute got entangled with his ringsight, and if it wasnt for his cypres, he wouldnt live to tell the story



So he was *unable* to pull the reserve himself?
"No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms." -- Thomas Jefferson, Thomas Jefferson Papers, 334

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

Most of the common AAD’s used today go on the reserve. They really should be on the main but we don’t want to give up our hand deploy PC’s. It seems foolish to me to become conscious under a malfunctioned reserve and have a perfectly good main packed up that you can’t get to.



I'd rather be unconscious under my bigger 7 cell reserve than my smaller elliptical.

I'd rather have an unstable opening under my bigger 7 cell reserve than my smaller elliptical.
"No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms." -- Thomas Jefferson, Thomas Jefferson Papers, 334

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

Quote

Most of the common AAD’s used today go on the reserve. They really should be on the main but we don’t want to give up our hand deploy PC’s. It seems foolish to me to become conscious under a malfunctioned reserve and have a perfectly good main packed up that you can’t get to.



I'd rather be unconscious under my bigger 7 cell reserve than my smaller elliptical.

I'd rather have an unstable opening under my bigger 7 cell reserve than my smaller elliptical.




John said:
It seems foolish to me to become conscious under a malfunctioned reserve and have a perfectly good main packed up that you can’t get to.


~ I don't understand the 'can't get to part', if I had a streamering reserve...what keeps me from throwing out the main and hoping too?










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

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

John said:
It seems foolish to me to become conscious under a malfunctioned reserve and have a perfectly good main packed up that you can’t get to.



Yes, but what are the real chances that a person will wake up sometime below 750 feet after an AAD fire and have time to really do anything?

And if I were to have an AAD fire, I'd rather it be on my MOST stable canopy and the one that is MOST likely to open in the event I am not stable.
"No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms." -- Thomas Jefferson, Thomas Jefferson Papers, 334

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

Quote

his chute got entangled with his ringsight, and if it wasnt for his cypres, he wouldnt live to tell the story



So he was *unable* to pull the reserve himself?

in this pretty stressfull situation my priority was not to be decapitated by a deploying main attached to my head.
Once my head was clear (lines taken off from around my neck, helmet ditched), I pulled the reserve handle, but that was just after my CYPRES fired.
Yes I did loose altitude awareness, but my thought was I would rather go in with my head still attached to my body.:|
scissors beat paper, paper beat rock, rock beat wingsuit - KarlM

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

in this pretty stressfull situation my priority was not to be decapitated by a deploying main attached to my head.
Once my head was clear (lines taken off from around my neck, helmet ditched), I pulled the reserve handle, but that was just after my CYPRES fired.
Yes I did loose altitude awareness, but my thought was I would rather go in with my head still attached to my body.



Looking back.... Would you have done anything differently?
"No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms." -- Thomas Jefferson, Thomas Jefferson Papers, 334

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

Looking back.... Would you have done anything differently?

I would have had a properly mounted helmet (removable ringsight on nylon screws, helmet cutaway), I would have pitched the PC immediately and not held onto it, because there was far enough distance between us.
Should I get in the same situation again (head wrapped in lines etc), I guess my instinct would still be to have a clear head still attached to my body [:/]
scissors beat paper, paper beat rock, rock beat wingsuit - KarlM

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

Should I get in the same situation again (head wrapped in lines etc), I guess my instinct would still be to have a clear head still attached to my body



1. You think that it is better to mess with a malfunction till you are either saved by an AAD, or hit the ground?

2. You think that a reserve pull would somehow cause your main to rip off your head when freefall was not doing it?
"No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms." -- Thomas Jefferson, Thomas Jefferson Papers, 334

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I am not saying that it would be the right thing to do.
Just saying that this was my instinct.
Go wrap your head in a mess of lines and webbing and see how you react.
Are you SURE your head will not be extracted by the opening main ?

I know that the correct answer would be STOP THE SKYDIVE, get the reserve out.

And for info, it was the reserve pull which caused the main to get out of the dbag, so I could have by the same way landed my body with a good reserve, and my head with the main [:/]
scissors beat paper, paper beat rock, rock beat wingsuit - KarlM

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

And for info, it was the reserve pull which caused the main to get out of the dbag, so I could have by the same way landed my body with a good reserve, and my head with the main [:/]



then there wouldnt be no flaming! :P

:D:D:D

actually, maybe not so funny.. :|
“Some may never live, but the crazy never die.”
-Hunter S. Thompson
"No. Try not. Do... or do not. There is no try."
-Yoda

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

Arguments against using AADs are based on either a macho mentality, or a misguided cheapskate approach to economy.



I call it risk management - but if misguided cheapskate approach to economy works for you - that's OK. BTW - why is it misguided? Has the person that spends money for an AAD they never use been misguided out of their money, or is it just the person that dies and might have been saved by one was misguided into death? Or is anybody who chooses other than as you do misguided? But I digress.

Haven't jumped with an AAD for about a decade now. Had one as a newbie, even moved it to my updated gear in my 4th or 5th year. But declined to buy another when it reached the manufacturer's planned obsolescence date.

To me it is like paying $300 per year for insurance that is rarely needed, and even when it is, comes with no guarantee of being of value. There are what - about 3 million skydives per year - and roughly 1 in 100,000 to 150,000 result in a fatality - and for about half an AAD was irrelevant since they are people augering themselves into the ground under a perfectly good canopy. So roughly figuring; deciding never to hook turn does more to improve your chances of survival than wearing an expensive mechanical gizmo.

Not sure how many AAD saves there are for non-student sport jumps, but I'd guess the numbers are similar - 20 to 30 firings per year in which the person would have died w/o the AAD. Bottom line is a person is paying a significant chunk of change to guard against an event that is highly unlikely, and with no guarantee the money spent will change the outcome.

As far as being required - I'm sure a lot of people killed by head injuries in vehicle crashes would be walking around today if only the government would require full coverage crash helmets for all drivers.

I do agree that tandems, students, and even the lower license levels (maybe A & B) should have them.
" . . . the lust for power can be just as completely satisfied by suggesting people into loving their servitude as by flogging them and kicking them into obedience." -- Aldous Huxley

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'd agree, I am happy to jump without an AAD, but have to jump with an AAD because pretty much all DZs demand you have an AAD.

I'm pretty pissed at the fact that the AAD I use has been grounded yet again... since the DZ's kit hire is all this model of AAD, and my own is the same make. It means I'm effectively grounded completely lest I can find a DZ which uses the FXC or the cypress.....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

I'd agree, I am happy to jump without an AAD, but have to jump with an AAD because pretty much all DZs demand you have an AAD.



I've been to about two dozen of dropzones in several states of states, and not one asked or checked if I had an AAD.

Which country are you jumping in?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

the AAD I use has been grounded yet again...



You have a Vigil with a cutter manufactured in October 2007? And so do all the kit hire rigs? Wow. That sounds... particularly unfortunate.

Also, when you say all the DZs require an AAD, I presume you have now moved out of the United Kingdom and live in a different country, maybe because of the UK Jumping Sucks thread - a small minority of UK dropzones require an AAD for B-licence jumpers but most figure it's up to you.

Perhaps you should come back!
--
"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?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote


Not sure how many AAD saves there are for non-student sport jumps, but I'd guess the numbers are similar - 20 to 30 firings per year in which the person would have died w/o the AAD. Bottom line is a person is paying a significant chunk of change to guard against an event that is highly unlikely, and with no guarantee the money spent will change the outcome.



Bill Burke had some numbers in his report about safety at Skydive Arizona. If I remember correctly it costs around 700.000USD per AAD saved life. Pretty cheap compared to many other safety items/policies.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

0