Sky Diving Safety

Written by Helen Glenn Court
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Sky diving safety is of paramount importance. You're jumping out of an airplane at 10,000 feet with a parachute on your back and 6,000 feet of freefall through the blue sky below you. It can be a dangerous sport. Sky diving safety measures are imperative. On your first jump, you'll be with experienced jumpers responsible for sky diving safety. After that, sky diving safety is up to you. Your attitude, your knowledge, and your skill will be telling. Let's look at several high points.

Elements of Sky Diving Safety

Equipment can make you or break you. You're wearing a harness and a parachute. You're depending on the parachute to carry you gently for four minutes through about 4,000 feet of space. And if the harness doesn't hold, or the chute release catches, or the chute itself is torn, you are in trouble. Learn the parts: chute, bridle, bag, canopy, risers, rig. Look after them. You're entrusting your life to them.

Behavior in the plane means you in the airplane. Keep all talk relative to the jump for now. Stay alert. When it's your turn, make sure you and your gear are clear of other lines and equipment. Check your gear just before it's your turn. You will always know when your turn is.

Canopy control is critical. Set aside the subtle maneuvers of experts for a moment. If you mishandle or can't handle the canopy, your sky diving safety odds plummet. I know this to be true. I was hang gliding, wavered during a stall for a millisecond, and ended up in a crumbled heap on the ground with the second largest bone in my body broken in two pieces, one of which had shattered. Paying attention to safety is important. A millisecond can be a long and significant time.

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