Gearing Up - July 2014

Tag: Gearing Up, July 2014

EdScott

To the general public, skydiving and BASE jumping are similar sports. Of course, they are not. Skydiving has an array of Federal Aviation Regulations that apply—Part 65 to riggers, Part 91 to jump pilots, Part 105 to jump pilots, skydivers and operators—along with USPA Basic Safety Requirements and Skydiver’s Information Manual recommendations. BASE jumping? Not so much. more »

Gearing Up - June 2014

Tag: Gearing Up, June 2014

EdScott

Technology has changed the sport of skydiving in myriad ways over the years and nearly always in ways that have made it better. As skydiving equipment such as parachutes, harness-and-container systems and altimeters have evolved, so have video cameras. Cameras are now lightweight, portable and inexpensive, and they are capable of producing high-quality, high-definition images even if the user has little photographic expertise. All of this has made them prevalent at just about every DZ. more »

Gearing Up - May 2014

Tag: Gearing Up, May 2014

EdScott

In the article “Truffer’s Legacy” on page 36 of this issue, you’ll read about the very generous way that Mike Truffer gave back to the sport he loved so much, via arrangements he made prior to his untimely death last year. The former USPA staffer, Parachutist editor and board member actually spearheaded the creation of the U.S. Parachute Team Trust Fund as an endowment that would grow over time to financially help U.S. Team members meet the cost of competing at world meets. And in his will, he provided for the Team Trust Fund, a cause to which he had encouraged others to donate, truly walking the walk. more »

Gearing Up - April 2014

Tag: Gearing Up, April 2014

EdScott

At what age should a person be allowed to skydive? At its most recent meeting, USPA’s board of directors decided the age should be 18 effective May 1. Anyone under 18 who has made a jump prior to that date may continue skydiving as long as they acquire a USPA A license by the last day of 2014. Anyone under 18 who is already licensed by May 1 can continue skydiving without condition. more »

Gearing Up - March 2014

Tag: Gearing Up, March 2014

EdScott

In 1996, Patti Chernis, a Northwest jumper who won election to the USPA Board that year but perished on a skydive before taking her seat, advanced the idea of the skydiving community spending a day early in each season to focus on safety. In 1997, USPA Safety Day—a day when DZs host seminars, demonstrations and discussions about how to enhance each skydiver’s level of safety—began. more »

Gearing Up - February 2014

Tag: Gearing Up, February 2014

EdScott

As this is written, the year 2013 has just ended. As always, the new year provides a time for reflection on events of the previous year. For USPA that includes a final tally of U.S. skydiving fatalities and a review of their underlying causes. Not lost on us here is that each of these was fully a tragedy for the families and friends of those taken by a sport they so loved. Their inclusion as statistics isn’t meant to diminish their lives, but instead is intended to help the rest of us learn and survive. more »

Gearing Up - January 2014

Tag: Gearing Up, January 2014

EdScott

They were quickly dubbed the “Miracle Eleven”—the nine skydivers and two pilots who escaped virtually unscathed from a mid-air collision between two jump planes in formation over Superior, Wisconsin, in November. It is clear that providence was smiling on all 11 that day, with the nine skydivers landing under their main canopies, one pilot landing under his emergency rig’s round canopy and the other pilot landing his damaged plane on the runway. And no one on the ground was injured. more »

Gearing Up - December 2013

Tag: Gearing Up, December 2013

EdScott

USPA has revised its “Beyond the First Jump” program, an effort to connect with first-jump customers and get them to consider coming back to the DZ and exploring skydiving beyond the first jump. USPA provides DZs with business cards to give to every first-jump customer. The card’s QR code links to a web-based, two-minute promotional video featuring skydivers inviting the customer to come back, while showing skydiving’s many disciplines and conveying the bond among skydivers. The web page provides links to first-person accounts from other skydivers describing their early jumps or how skydiving changed their lives. more »

Gearing Up - November 2013

Tag: Gearing Up, November 2013

EdScott

Recently, the Federal Aviation Administration finally weighed in on a long-running battle for airport access that USPA supported. The FAA decided in favor of skydiving, which, together with its previous favorable decisions, strengthens its decades-old determination that skydiving is an aeronautical activity that has a right to be on airports that receive federal funds. more »

Gearing Up - October 2013

Tag: Gearing Up, October 2013

EdScott

At its summer meeting, the USPA Board acted to change the Basic Safety Requirements by increasing the minimum deployment altitude for C- and D-license holders from 2,000 feet to 2,500 feet. The 2,000-foot container-opening-altitude minimum has been in place since 1966, a time when parachutes generally opened quickly. more »