Usasoc Static Line (sl) Parachute Fatality Nov 10

Florida173

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This is a distributed Fatality Bulletin of a recent static line jumpmaster fatally wounded.


A USASOC Soldier was fatally injured during the conduct of a daylight C-130 parachute operation when he landed, struck his head on a paved surface, and was dragged by his T10-D parachute. The Soldier was performing Jumpmaster duties when the accident occurred.

The Accident Investigation Board identified leadership, individual, and material failures that contributed to the cause of the accident. The leadership failed to ensure personnel assigned to critical positions (JMs/DZSO) were current, the proper support was available, or if the operation's risk assessment was completed and signed. The Board also determined that the fatally injured Soldier was neither a current jumper nor a current Jumpmaster and that the assigned a DZSO was not current.

The fatality involved a Senior Warrant Officer (180A) with over 30 years of service. Although he was known as an experienced jumper and Jumpmaster he had a reputation of doing things "his own way." The unit conducted BAR the morning of the jump, but the fatally injured Soldier did not attend. During mock door training the fatally injured Soldier was corrected by an NCO on his parachutist exit control procedures. The Soldier replied that he had his own method of controlling jumpers' exits. No other effort was made to correct the Soldier's actions.

The unit utilized a surveyed Drop Zone (DZ) (an active airfield) of sufficient length (over 2100 meters) to require a second DZSO. However, the unit determined that it only required 7 seconds of the DZ length due to the small number of jumpers and elected to use 1 DZSO in violation of FM 3-21.220, Static Line Parachute Techniques and Training. Because of the incorrect setup of the DZ, the Malfunctions Officer was not properly positioned to view the entire operation and was unable to see the fatally injured Soldier's landing. The USAF calculated the CARP release point based on the DZ surveyed length.

The first pass did not drop due to high winds. After a 10 minute hold the first pass executed their drop. The Accident Investigation Board determined that automatic wind data recorded by the airfield depicted winds at 8-19 knots during this period.

The fatally injured Soldier's failure to follow prescribed exit procedures resulted in his stick using the entire length of the DZ, vise the 7 seconds as stated in the MACO briefing. His position as Jumpmaster placed him far down the DZ and it is suspected he experienced high ground winds as he attempted to maneuver his parachute to the DZ.

It was determined that the fatally injured Soldier executed a down-wind front PLF, striking his head on the paved taxiway. He was then dragged across the pavement ending up on the grass shoulder. During his PLF, the Soldier's helmet chin strap buckle fractured and separated, allowing the helmet to be knocked off his head, which contributed to the severity of his head injuries. The helmet has been sent to Natick Laboratory for further analysis.

ACCIDENT BOARD RECOMMENDATIONS:

The Accident Investigation Board recommended that USASOC review their airborne procedures and ensure that only qualified personnel participate in or supervise airborne operations.

Leaders must review the Risk Assessment Worksheet (RAW) prior to high-risk events, update them as necessary, and ensure that the RAW is signed by the proper authority.

Commanders must place emphasis on Soldier compliance with all qualifications, currency, and training requirements outlined in USASOC Regulation 350-2 and associated Army regulations.

Safety is always the most important consideration when conducting high risk training. Commanders at all levels should analyze the complete training event to determine the degree of risk to Soldiers, that the training is conducted in a safe and logical manner, and that the training standards are understood and enforced.
 

AWP

Formerly Known as Freefalling
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Jesus Christ.....WTF?

Blue Skies, Chief, but seriously you had to go out like that?
 

Electric Eye

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The DZSO has to make the call. Winds over 13 knots require a ten minute wait, and then checking again. If the wind is still over 13 knots, a third reading is required. If on the third reading the winds exceed 13, the DZSO can cancel the drop.
I have been pressured to allow jumps, but I have made the call to cancel under dangerous conditions.
I have also landed when I know damn well that ground winds were above 13.
RIP, jumper. It could have been prevented.
 

Marauder06

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My last jump with 5th Group we jumped into high winds; when it came time to land I turned into the wind but it felt like the wind was pushing so hard on the front of my 'chute that it was making it collapse... I don't even know if that's possible but that's what it seemed like. I knew I was either going to hit the road or the trees, and I didn't want to do that back-first. I turned and ended up running with the wind, which of course increased my speed.

Worse yet, when I got close to the ground I knew I was going to hit the road and it was going to hurt, so I reached for the ground. I did the worst PLF ever onto the DZ boundary road, got dragged on my back and on my belly, had to pop both risers because the wind was so bad, and somewhere along the line my reserve got popped and was trailing on the ground behind me. From the report it sounds like I did some of the same things that the chief (RIP) did. I was very lucky to escape with only a destroyed uniform and some scuffed knees and elbows. It could have been a lot worse.
 

mike_cos

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I just read this thread now ... I feel sorry for the fatal accident, but I wonder why T-10 parachute instead of MC1-B or C because the jump was carried out near the runway of the aircraft, as MC1-B or C is more easy manoeuvrable in the event of shit under your feet. We use the T-10 parachute only to jump into the sea (you can see in my posts). If you have strong wind and no MC1-B or C parachute, shit comes to the fan...

RIP my firend
 

Red Flag 1

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I just read this thread now ... I feel sorry for the fatal accident, but I wonder why T-10 parachute instead of MC1-B or C because the jump was carried out near the runway of the aircraft, as MC1-B or C is more easy manoeuvrable in the event of shit under your feet. We use the T-10 parachute only to jump into the sea (you can see in my posts). If you have strong wind and no MC1-B or C parachute, shit comes to the fan...

RIP my firend

Just saw this myself, sad news on many levels here. Rest In God's Peace Chief.
 

Rabid Badger

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I know many 180A's but I can't for the life of me find the NOK info.

Please post the specifics of the WO's death.

RIP brother.
 

Etype

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I just read this thread now ... I feel sorry for the fatal accident, but I wonder why T-10 parachute instead of MC1-B or C because the jump was carried out near the runway of the aircraft, as MC1-B or C is more easy manoeuvrable in the event of shit under your feet. We use the T-10 parachute only to jump into the sea (you can see in my posts). If you have strong wind and no MC1-B or C parachute, shit comes to the fan...

RIP my firend

Will anyone say what group/unit this was? We have moved past the MC-1, and SF-10 to MC-6. Even conventional airborne units are using the T-11 now. I think any of these newer chutes, while still resulting in an injury may have greatly reduced the sevcrity. Another sad aspect of the whole thing.
 

Florida173

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Will anyone say what group/unit this was? We have moved past the MC-1, and SF-10 to MC-6. Even conventional airborne units are using the T-11 now. I think any of these newer chutes, while still resulting in an injury may have greatly reduced the sevcrity. Another sad aspect of the whole thing.


I believe when it says "A USASOC Soldier was fatally injured..." that the unit could possibly be just that.

Attached is the original that most of you guys should have gotten from your J3 Air



 

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  • FY 11 SL FATALITY NOV 2010.pdf
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mike_cos

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Will anyone say what group/unit this was? We have moved past the MC-1, and SF-10 to MC-6. Even conventional airborne units are using the T-11 now. I think any of these newer chutes, while still resulting in an injury may have greatly reduced the sevcrity. Another sad aspect of the whole thing.
Well said.... MC-6 is very fast chute...sometimes (personnel not trained well and strong wind) might to be more dangerous. My buddy last year (not FOLGORE paratrooper but GUARDIA DI FINANZA not expert) broke his leg in five points since landed with the wind reaching the relative speed of at least 40 kmh, it was fortunate that he did not die. It became clear that completely missed the landing, the famous refusal of landing. sometimes shit happens
 
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