Wingsuit Rules and Recommendations

Wingsuiting continues to gain in popularity every year. And why not? Sailing through the skies like a glider is a lot of fun! The discipline is attracting lots of jumpers, with a continual influx of new wingsuit flyers joining the ranks. However, not all news related to wingsuiting has been good news, and those who participate in the discipline continue to struggle in some areas, including:

  • Adhering to rules and regulations for cloud clearances
  • Exit procedures
  • Flying safe patterns that avoid aircraft and allow for landing at the drop zone landing area

Helping with Safety Day

For many, Safety Day—a day full of refresher training and important life-saving presentations—signals the start of the skydiving season. Like a bugler blaring reveille to signal a charge, a DZ announces Safety Day as a call to action. March 11 (although some DZs will select another date) is right around the corner, so you and your fellow coaches and instructors should already be helping your Safety and Training Advisor with plans for the day. more »

Frayed Risers

The owner of this Sun Path Javelin Odyssey noticed some fraying on the left reserve riser that looked similar to damage caused by contact with Velcro. However, there was no Velcro anywhere on the container. A senior rigger inspected the container and found that the rubber shrink wrap at the end of the cutaway cable housing was worn away and exposed the end of the housing, which had two small rough spots on its edge. These rough spots rubbed on the riser (which is part of the harness) and damaged the nylon. The cable housing was replaced with a factory replacement, but the harness was not damaged to the point where it needed to be replaced. Frequent inspections can help to identify worn or damaged components early and avoid more costly repairs in the future.

2-way Belly Star Exit

 

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Brought to you by Niklas Daniel and Brianne Thompson of AXIS Flight School at Skydive Arizona in Eloy. Photo by David Cherry. Information about AXIS' coaching and instructional services is available at axisflightschool.com. more »

Head Up Side Slides

 

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Brought to you by Niklas Daniel and Brianne Thompson of AXIS Flight School at Skydive Arizona in Eloy. Photo by David Cherry. Information about AXIS' coaching and instructional services is available at axisflightschool.com. more »

Container Lock

A jumper experienced a pilot-chute-in-tow malfunction after the stitching that held the main closing pin to the bridle failed. Consequently, the main closing pin remained in place after the pilot chute inflated. The jumper performed emergency procedures and landed uneventfully under the reserve parachute. To avoid this situation, frequently inspect your main bridle's pin-attachment point to ensure that the stitching and webbing are in airworthy condition.

Demonstrating Good Sense

Skydivers have to demonstrate a variety of skills and knowledge to earn the USPA PRO rating, which many of the public demonstration jumps conducted around the country each year require. Jumpers must train to jump with smoke and flags, learn to file a request for authorization with the local Federal Aviation Administration Flight Standards District Office, complete 10 accuracy jumps and demonstrate proficiency in many other ways. But one of the most important attributes that every PRO jumper must have is not on the test: knowing when to say no and call off a demo jump. more »

Christmas Cameras

So Santa dropped a shiny new GoPro under the tree, and you are just dying to start jumping with it, right? Well, dying to jump with it could literally be the case, so be sure you are ready for the added challenges before you slap that thing on your helmet on the first warm day of the season. Jumping with a video camera involves challenges, many of which are not obvious to those who decide to start jumping with one. USPA recommends that anyone jumping with a camera hold at least a USPA C license (200 jumps), but jump numbers are not the only consideration. Before you start, check out Section 6-8 of the Skydiver’s Information Manual, which includes lots of helpful information. more »

MFS Block 1 - Double 69

 

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Brought to you by Niklas Daniel and Brianne Thompson of AXIS Flight School at Skydive Arizona in Eloy. Photos by David Cherry. Information about AXIS' coaching and instructional services is available at axisflightschool.com. more »

Misassembled Reserve Soft Links

During a routine reserve canopy and container inspection and repack, a Federal Aviation Administration Master Rigger discovered that all of the soft links used to attach the reserve canopy’s suspension lines to the four risers were assembled incorrectly. The looped end of the soft link was slipped over the metal loop but had not first passed through the other end of the soft link and formed a lark’s head locking loop around the metal ring. Without the security of the lark’s head locking the assembly together, a soft link can come apart because the metal ring can easily slip through the loop. more »