|Description: After a four way jump, the deceased suffered a violently spinning malfunction on his Startrac 2 main canopy, which he cutaway from at a low altitude. While unstable, at about 800-900 ft, he deployed his reserve. It (a Swift) opened into into serious line twists, potentially due to his unstable attitude during reserve deployment. He landed extremely hard under a partially-inflated reserve. The reserve was found to still have about 5 line twists. Reportedly, the risers were tangled around his throat, perhaps strangling him during decent. He weighed about 215 lbs and was jumping a Racer with a Pull-out main deployment system. He had been involved in the sport for 35 years.
|Lessons:Perhaps a more rapid reaction to the situation would have given time to resolve the line twists on the reserve.
This may be an example of when taking a second or two to get stable after cutting away might have made a difference. It is worth considering what differences you might make in your emergency procedures if you have a CYPRES. Should you take the time to get stable (assuming a cutaway above 1200ish), guessing that, (if you take too long), your CYPRES will back you up? Without a CYPRES, trying to guess how long it's safe to take to stable out is a much riskier estimate. Of course, if the cutaway is low enough that you won't reach firing speed for the CYPRES before you hit the minimum useful firing altitude (200ft?), then an immediate pull is your only option. [I recognize some implications of this discussion may be a bit heretical to some people. Think and evaluate for yourself.]